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CWS has supported a local partner, KCDA, to set up rice banks in several villages. In the past, families who ran out of basic food.would have to borrow rice from rice lenders who charged 100% interest. If they borrow one kilo, they must pay with 2 kilos. So the.families would fall further and further behind. With a rice bank, the members build an elevated shed, that is supported initially with a cache of emergency rice. When a family runs short of food, they can.borrow rice, and pay it back at only 20% interest. Slowly the bank.builds a surplus of food that is made available to members as.emergency rations for any family in distress. One of the quiet successes of this program is that it fosters a sense of community that.was largely lost during the war. One woman said, "before we kept to ourselves. But now that we meet regularly, we know each other better and we are friends.".One of the things CWS does that is unusual is they devote a great.deal of staff time to teaching villagers the skills that will make.them successful on their own. In Cambodia, for example, they teach.villagers how to structure a committee. How to work together to determine priorities, and how to put together requests for government or NGO support for a specific project. It's quite amazing to watch.
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©Annie Griffiths
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CWS has supported a local partner, KCDA, to set up rice banks in several villages.  In the past, families who ran out of basic food.would have to borrow rice from rice lenders who charged 100% interest. If they borrow one kilo, they must pay  with 2 kilos.  So the.families would fall further and further behind.  With a rice bank, the members build an elevated shed, that is supported initially with a cache of emergency rice.  When a family runs short of food, they can.borrow rice, and pay it back at only 20% interest.  Slowly the bank.builds a surplus of food that is made available to members as.emergency rations for any family in distress.  One of the quiet successes of this program is that it fosters a sense of community that.was largely lost during the war.  One woman said, "before we kept to ourselves.  But now that we meet regularly, we know each other better and we are friends.".One of the things CWS does that is unusual is they devote a great.deal of staff time to teaching villagers the skills that will make.them successful on their own.  In Cambodia, for example, they teach.villagers how to structure a committee.  How to work together to determine priorities, and how to put together requests for government or NGO support for a specific project.  It's quite amazing to watch.