CWCC has implemented the saving for change project in target areas of Phnom Penh, Banteay Meanchey, Siem Reap and Kampong Thom. Members of each saving group elect a Committee composed of Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary and Key Holder. Currently there are 69 saving groups consisting of 1263 members (1003 female): 20 in Phnom Penh; 22 in Banteay Meanchey, 22 in Siem Reap and 5 in Kampong Thom. As at December 2014, the total capital of the groups was $65,695.89.
To make sure the groups are functioning, the project team conducted regular follow up visits. During the visits, the team has observed members depositing capital, and provided ongoing mentoring about bookkeeping and records management. In addition, the team has also raised awareness about violence against women including domestic violence, rape, negative impacts of such violence, human trafficking and unsafe migration.
The saving groups have been a good model in terms of solidarity and building resilience in financial matters in the communities through regular saving, access to loans from their own saving group, as well as sharing social issues such as migration, human trafficking and domestic violence, and other relevant issues. Besides saving money, the members have come up with ideas about women’s business groups, and a few have already been established with financial support from CWCC, contributions from members, and loans accessed from the saving group.
Starting in mid-2011, CWCC facilitated the establishment of several women’s economic empowerment groups and small enterprises. The idea is to create meaningful connection and exchange between group members, and empower women by transforming their status in decision making processes and entrepreneurship initiatives. The groups have attracted interest from other community members who came to visit and learn about the businesses. Currently, there are 27 groups consisting of 136 female members in Phnom Penh and Banteay Meanchey. The groups mainly are pig raising, chicken raising, vegetable planting, rug weaving, and car washing. Moreover, end of 2014, the Women Inaction (WIN) project in Siem Reap has established 12 individual business for members of saving group and parents of scholarship girls of which individual business of pig raising for 5 members in Kdol village of Kralanh district and 2 members from Khvein village of Siem Reap city and 5 members on scarf weaving in Taleung village, Kralanh