Jannes Newsletter November 2020

Dear friends and partners,

During this Covid pandemic, news from Cambodia is not good. It is not the Covid virus that threatens the lives of many Cambodians, rather it’s the collateral economic virus that threatens so many in this country of sorrows. I have received a number of reports of families losing their land and their homes because of their inability to repay micro-finance loans because of jobs and incomes and their easy access to loans – loans that they don’t understand, loans that they are unable to repay. The current debt load per person is $3,800.00 USD – a staggering amount for the majority of people who earn less than $200.00 USD per month. It saddens me to hear again of children being sold, of land and homes being sold or seized – of lives lived precariously once again being destroyed.

But there is also good news – Tabitha savings program is being sought out by the poorest – sought out as a solution to living a simple, decent life without the worry and stress of repaying loans. Let me share the story of Men Chhong and his wife Roth Yon who have 5 children. They live in Veal village, Svay Rieng province. Men shared how in the past he tried to save money to buy needed things but was always tempted as he says, “ by petty and needless expenses” on which he spent his savings. Then Men heard about the Tabitha Cambodia savings program and the success people had who saved. He talked about how these villagers were able to improve their lives by growing vegetables, raising animals, having small business, etc. So, Men went to meet Tabitha Cambodia’s staff to get more details about the Saving Program. “Now I have become a new family in Tabitha Saving program, I’m very happy and look forward to achieving what I have been dreaming of. “

As the floods are receding, we are able to install wells again. Pech Sam Oeun, and his wife Hon Sophy, have 5 children. They live in Ta Kheng village, Svay Rieng province. They have been saving with Tabitha for nearly 2 years. Pech says that he understands how savings is very important to “bring our lives to the adequacy. From one cycle to another in 2 years of saving money with Tabitha, I was able to buy enough food for our basic meals, buy pots and pans, school uniforms, stationary for our children going to school, and I was able to do many kinds of seasonal crops that is a very important part to earn extra incomes. We just received a longed for water well from which we plan to raise chickens, ducks, and pigs so that we can earn more income for our family. I’m so very happy and feel completely different from years ago before meeting Tabitha Cambodia.”

I am so grateful to my God for the staff who are so faithful, for families who believe despite the hard times, for all of you who stand with all of us – it brings hope at a time when hope is not so easy. We are getting closer to Cambodia on our Virtual Mission. It is not too late to join or to support those of us who are walking the miles to Cambodia.

Tabitha Canada: Contact Yolanda Henry to join the mission: yolanda@tabitha.caDonate at: https://www.canadahelps.org/en/pages/tabitha-foundations-virtual-mission-from-canada-to/

Tabitha Australia: A team page has been set up for Tabitha Supporters in Australia, send your kms walked/run/swum each week to Sharon.Doubikin@tabithaaustralia.org.au and she will collate the data and update the page. If you just wish to make a donation click on this link https://tabithaaustralia.org.au/teams/Canada-to-Cambodia-Walk-with-Janne/

Tabitha UK: The link to the campaign page for the UK is:

https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/canadatocambodia

Tabitha USA: www.Tabithausa.org or contact Erika Hoffman Kiess at: hoffman.kiess@gmail.com

I’m so thankful to my God for each of you; for hope and vision that goes beyond the Covid threat; for each of us walking with the people of Cambodia. How very good that is!

Janne

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