Jannes Newsletter June 2020

Dear friends and partners,

It is good to be able to write during this trying time of the corona virus. Cambodia, like so many countries around the world, struggles to find a healthy balance between loosening restrictions for the population to be able to return to work while protecting the population from spreading the virus. In so many ways Cambodia is blessed as the virus has not taken hold and spread through communities but rather is brought in by travelers from many parts of the world (122 cases in total – all recovered) Keeping the borders closed is good but has devastated the tourism industry – an industry that had employed thousands of Cambodians. Businesses built on supplying the tourism industry has suffered greatly. A second important source of employment are the garment factories which had employed over 800,000 people – most are now closed – and life is very difficult and uncertain for so very many people.

What has become clear is how important and relevant the savings program is. I want to share a story from Kandal – Heng and Thearom visited last week and spoke with Nith Chanthon. She lives in Prek Taek ?Village, Kandal Province and joined the Tabitha savings program in April 2017.

As she says” till now my family living is getting better from day to day through Saving Program including received Well from Tabitha. I am possible to planting vegetable, rice plants, and feeds animals. I have received profits to buy materials such as: Water jars Plates, Pots and Toilet and enlarge house built and especially my kids are going to school. “

Humble words which are a testament to her strength and faith in her ability to improve her family’s life – a journey out of poverty, uncertainty anddespair. During this time of covid, Nith is able to provide for her family without undo stress. What a gift that is!

I thank each of you who stand with Nith and so many other families like her – during this period of the corona virus – all of us feel the strain and pain of not having control of our lives. Poverty is a life time of uncertainty and lack of control. I thank my God that each of you have given this gift to thousands of families here in Cambodia. Thank you.

Janne

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