Our partners who do community development show a unique brand of leadership. They lead with big visions, and their organizations offer a vast array of programs. There is always have a new project in the works or a new goal. These partners are driven by a love of their people and the communities they serve.
Here are a few of their stories:
Kayan Community Development Services
Imagine growing up speaking your native language and then traveling many miles on foot for your first day of school.
Imagine arriving to kindergarten feeling energetic and ready to learn…and not understanding a word your teacher says.
This is what happens to many Kayan (also known as Karenni) children.
They feel isolated. They get frustrated. And without support, they fail and drop out.
But that’s not the hardest part about being Kayan.
Migrant workers can’t use banks. So when they have an urgent cash need, they usually go to a money lender who charges 10-20% in interest.
A person can borrow 2000 baht to take care of a sick grandson, but end up owing 10,000 baht in no time.
And money lenders can take absolutely anything of value if the borrower can’t pay.
Savings groups are one tool to create more financial stability in a community, but Seri Thongmak will tell you that a “good idea” can rarely be sold from the outside.
So what do you do?
You listen and you adjust.