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Sustainability - Small Steps to Success!

A bike used to sell noodles so a grandma can to feed her family? “Seeding” a grass shack with inventory that enables a handicapped lady to open a “convenience store”? MTRF is proud to play a small role in these & future sustainability projects. How did this all come about? Well, it began with our desire to take steps toward our longer-term goal of sustainability for our “well family” members. What’s the best approach? Drop by Drop...step by step...small project by small project….

At MTRF, we focus on addressing the fundamental human need for water by donating wells & then work our way up Maslow’s Pyramid by tending to health (nutrition aids/nets to prevent disease) & education (uniforms/school supplies). All of this is done to pave the way for them to enjoy a healthy & productive life, which leads to the topics of sustainability & development.

While most of the families in Cambodia are involved in farming, the pay is low & it’s very physically demanding to work in the rice fields. This is where alternative opportunities come into play: MTRF’s on-the-ground partners comb villages to identify individuals that share our passionate views on sustainability. This brings us back to noodles & a frond-topped “mini-mart”!

NOODLES! Tuch Riem has been making noodles by hand & selling them to neighboring families as a source of income. Delivering them on foot limited her reach & therefore, her income. As a recipient of a bike donation, she now has a mobile noodle delivery service! This has enabled her to expand her business, which aids in her ability to provide for her extended family.

Mini-Mart – Cambodian Style! Laun Nak didn’t want her physical handicaps to stand in the way of her independence! MTRF helped out by working with our partner in the construction of a modest “stand” & the initial inventory to launch her little shop. It went over so well, she was quickly able to invest her profits into expanding her inventory & we’re pleased to report that – months later – she’s running a self-sustaining, profitable little business, despite her life-long walking challenges!

It’s always so encouraging to bear witness to the subtle yet profound changes prompted by these small investments. “Paying it forward” as MTRF donors, Don Helwig - and also - Janis Carty have each said to us on previous occasions. In a time when there are so many challenges existing in this world, these little rays of sunshine give us all hope that we can each play a role in affecting a positive future, one drop at a time!

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