General Update 2017
Integrated Farming Project:
2017 was a busy year with the end of the Integrated Farming Pilot (IFP1) project in May 2017 and the creation of a new more intense Integrated Farming Project (IFP2). Both READA and Lotus worked hard to create a project that would impact the families involved as much as possible. The IFP2 project was finalised during the Trustees’ visit to Cambodia in September 2017.
Rice Bank Project:
During 2017 another Rice Bank was constructed through the funding of one of Lotus’ ongoing Third Party Donors, Hansabay. This took the total number of Rice Banks constructed by the end of 2017 to 21. Lotus is very proud of the success of the Rice Bank project.
A big number of the Rice Bank members have now reduced their debt from banks and/or the MFI because of the rice bank project.
Many member families now have enough paddy rice deposited in the Rice Banks for consumption by their families throughout the year. A number of them now, after 5-6 years of being members of a rice bank, can stop borrowing from the bank and the MFI. A number of the families can now start borrowing from the loan schemes created within some of the Rice Banks.
The Rice Bank project is the project which has been most successful in helping the communities reduce their debt and has helped them increase their income.
In 2017 4 Rice Banks were helped by the READA-Lotus project staff to create loan schemes within the Rice Banks. It is hoped that many more Rice Bank Committees will be helped to create loan schemes in 2018.