Families’ financial situations are improving so much that they’re moving above their local poverty line since receiving cows from Samaritan’s Purse and learning how to raise them.
“I see many farmers who work hard for years and are still very poor,” lamented Hoa Tran, Samaritan’s Purse Vietnam’s project officer for Lai Chau province.
Indeed there are many challenges facing families in the sparsely populated provinces of Lai Chau and Lao Cai along Vietnam’s northern border with China. The provinces are among the poorest in the southeast Asian nation and also the least industrialized.
Rugged mountains make transportation for commerce, school, and medical care difficult-less than a quarter of roads in Lai Chau are paved and there is neither a railway nor an airport in the province. Most families survive by raising crops and livestock, although cold winters and stifling hot summers test even seasoned farmers.
For more than a decade, Samaritan’s Purse has been providing practical assistance and demonstrating Christ’s love amidst these challenges. Distributing Operation Christmas Child shoebox gifts opened doors for us to also build schools, clinics, and latrines. We’ve provided scholarships and winter clothing for children and we’ve also taught essential lessons on hygiene, nutrition, and agriculture.
By God’s grace, transformation is beginning in people’s lives. “It takes time for people to learn and change,” reflected Hoa, “but I’m thankful to do what I can to help them.”
We rejoice that after just three years of applying improved techniques to raise cattle, more than half of the families participating in a Samaritan’s Purse “cow bank” project moved above the poverty line. We improved the project before launching it in another nearby community and now we’re aiming to see 70 percent of families lift themselves across the poverty line. More and more people are blessed each year as every participating family has followed through on their commitment to give their cow’s first calf to another waiting family, helping them also break free from poverty.
Please partner with us as we share good news with farmers that will help them break free of both physical and spiritual poverty.
“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor” (Isaiah 61:1-2a, NIV).