In a three-year period, July 2017 to June 2020, Australia received 54 project completion reports from projects it had funded, of which 49 included details of direct beneficiaries. An example of a direct beneficiary of a project that provides a milking cow is the person who receives the animal, and their household. Indirect beneficiaries may include other community members where any excess milk or milk products are more readily available locally.
Table 1 shows the number of direct beneficiaries, by country, for projects that were reported on over the three-year period. Twenty-four projects also reported their direct beneficiaries by gender, and of these, 87% of direct beneficiaries were female.
The majority of projects in India are Milk Cows, Sewing Machine or Small Business projects, which benefit a smaller number of people per project but aim to provide beneficiaries with a direct means of improving their income. This is in comparison to projects in Sri Lanka which tend to benefit more people by design. For example, an electricity project or water purification project providing a source of electricity or water filter to 20+ families, which aim to provide a service to beneficiaries which will then allow them to pursue better health and education outcomes. The project reported on in Indonesia is a coffee growing and training program and is into its 3rd year of operation, which is why the number of direct beneficiaries is relatively high. This project has previously been reported on and you can find out more here.
Many of the Small Business projects are ‘Revolving Loan’ projects, which means that the beneficiary is loaned the money and allowed to pay back in small instalments. This means that the money can be re-loaned when it has been repaid and also removes the need for businesspeople to have to rely on local money lenders who often charge high interest rates.
While there has already been an increase in rate of completion reports received during the last 3 years, due to the recommendation of a Review to actively request completion reports being implemented, the Overseas Partnership Advisory Committee is working on encouraging partners to report on all completed projects.
Lao PDR went into lockdown on April 1, and the Vincentians from the one conference that Australia is twinned with sprang into action. Vincentians provided support April and May to 108 families in 24 villages. Read more about their work here.
Brother Alphonse Kyaw Min, the National President of the Society in Myanmar reports that the government and charities have worked well together to provided basic commodities during the COVID 19 Pandemic. Some of the less affected regions in Myanmar are slowly returning to normal. Read more here.
Sister Lorna Macaroncio, Twinning Officer with the Philippine National Council, writes:
On Monday June 1, the Metro Manila was placed under the General Community Quarantine (GCQ), more relaxed measures. GCQ was implemented to gradually reopen the economy but must adhere to safety protocols.
We also resumed working in the office, but we offered our staff for an alternative work arrangement like 3-day work per week or work from home because of the reported new Covid 19 cases every day.
Thank you very much for your concern and solidarity with us and please continue to stay safe. God bless.
News from India from Br Stanly Michael, National Projects Coordinator in India, and Br Cyril Macwan, Ahmedabad Central Council Secretary:
Here in India the lock down started from March 22nd and is still on. Lock down is extended in stages and every stage is given with some relaxation. Now a lot of relaxation and at the same time the lock down is extended till 30th June.
All over India our Vincentians are in action helping the needy people, by supplying food materials and other essentials kits. All conference members are involved in the pandemic relief work. The conferences which are even financially poor also doing their bit to assist the Corona effected people. Coordinating with the local Hospital Authorities our members are reaching the patients and extending the necessary medical assistance in the Hospitals and the Houses. We are extending our support to all the people who are in need, not only our adopted families but to the other local people who are in need of any type of help. Cases are increasing in some part of India and both the Central and the State Government are jointly coordinating the relief work. Our death rate is less compared to some other countries. Hope soon the Authorities will discover some Preventive Vaccine to resist the Virus to spread.
Some parts of our country are also facing Cyclone threat these days. Many areas in some parts of India like Odissha, Bihar, Maharasthra, Bombay, Gujrath, Tamil Nadu and Kerala effected and has damaged many houses and the relief work is going on. Hope every this will settle soon. Do remember us in your Prayers.
~ Br Stanly Michael
During Covid 19, the Conferences under the Ahmedabad CC have come forward to do
the works of charity and we were able to help the needy ones. In March and April we have reached 2179 families providing them with essential commodities kits, medicines, vegetables, and some case was provided to meet their daily needs.
Please do remember us in your daily prayers
~ Br Cyril Macwan
Here in Kiribati we have 9 conferences plus 3 youth conferences. One of our conferences is twinned. Most of our conferences are on the main island of Tarawa, with three, plus one of our youth conferences, on outer islands.
Members of 7 conferences celebrated the feast of St Vincent with patients from the hospital on the island of Baso. We also invited three homeless people to join us to be guests at our meal, and provided them with new clothes to wear. We had a traditional welcome Galanding, where we sing and dance and present guests with a floral crown, and we shared a meal and conversation.
One conference also regularly visits the mental hospital on Tarawa. And one of the youth conferences also does this. We talk and dance and give patients small useful gifts like soap. Conference members also do some house visits, where we help people. For example, one conference gathered to help re-thatch the roof a blind lady’s house. We are planning to do more of this work, but it can be difficult to meet and do our work as it is expensive to travel, even small distances. For example it costs $1.50 for a bus fare, and many Vincentians cannot afford this regularly. We met as conferences every month and try to collect $5.00 between us to support our work. We have undertaken some fund raising, including cooking scones to sell, but this is difficult as others are doing similar work to make a living.
We are Vincentians to help people in our community. As one of our youth members said ‘we are in SVdP because we want to help and it is important to do this, it makes us feel good too.’