Individual Golden Talent award of 2009
Mrs. Phung Thi Chinh, a 51-year-old member of “Women integrated agriculture” (#22-0640-08-001), has a 91 year-old mother-in-law, three daughters and two sons. This big family lives in 6A, An Truong village, Cang Long district, Tra Vinh province. Prior to Heifer’s support, Chinh and her husband worked as hired laborers. Daily expenses, food and treatment for her husband’s cancer were all endless concerns for the landless couple.
In 2005, Heifer came and brought relief to Mrs. Chinh and her family by one heifer, revolving fund and training. Interested in Sustainability and Self-reliance and Improved animal management, she sees how much important to work independently when the project ends. Aware of the importance of new knowledge, Chinh never missed a single training class conducted by Heifer or the local agricultural extension center for sharing with her family in agriculture production. She applied what she learned to cow and swine and crop production. She has carefully-recorded books of the swine, cow and crop production to keep track of the input and output. Her diligence and application of skills taught by Heifer has brought her a productive output. She completed her “Passing On the Gift” and her cow produced 2 healthy heifers. She used the $95 revolving fund for swine production. The first herd brought her profit of $13 which, together with the original sow, was put back into the production. After one year, she gained $188 of profit from the next four herds. One part of the micro-credit helped to grow ginger and okra in a small area around the house. Composting the manure to fertilize the garden, she learns to protect the surroundings around the house. Small garden and low investment but high yield! Each kilo of ginger brings a profit of about $1, keeping her family from debt. In addition, Chinh sews clothes at home in her free time for extra income.
Though busy with housework, Chinh is enthusiastic with project activities such as group savings, co-mentoring among the four groups and monthly meetings. She is also a member of the An Truong Women’s Association. Despite her limited physical and financial sources, she is willing to help other sisters in the group with her knowledge and experience of how to raise animals and how to make clothes. She, also, with the group, visit sick or injured group members and neighbors for encouragement.
Every month, Mr. Chinh’s cancer consumes $125 of medicine and treatment which is much higher than their income. Thus, Ms. Chinh spends all the savings on the treatment. With a great heart of love, she handles everything in the house so that every one feels safe and happy. Luckily, she is a happy mother of three dutiful children who, unfortunately had to drop out of school to work in another province to share the financial burden with their mother and support their father’s treatment. Furthermore, the youngest son, Huynh Minh Nhi, is obedient, helpful and hardworking child, helping Ms. Chinh taking care of the cows, watering the garden and other daily chores. Moreover, he is a Taekwondo junior, and has won two gold medals and one silver medal in provincial contests. He is now a university student, which is powerful encouragement for his mother to shoulder all expenses and heavy work to support him.
Ms. Chinh's diligence, knowledge and determination has transformed Heifer’s support into the fruits of successes for herself, her family and her community.
Written by Nguyen Xuan Quyen
Communication and Networking Officer