Greetings! My name is Oeunn. I am 56 years old. I started participating in Fountain of Hope’s agricultural trainings two years ago. They equipped me to join the Seed Bank group. I learned so much about how to produce seeds and grow them effectively. Through the trainings I got excited about the prospect of producing better crops for the rice harvest. My family and I have been struggling financially for years. We’ve had a poor crop almost every year; this knowledge about seed planting has truly helped.
With the resources from the Seed Bank, I took a loan of seeds as I had no financial means to get new seed and my seeds were old. I planted the new seeds in the field according to the training I received.
As the rice began to grow, our excitement turned to disappointment because the rats came and ate some of the plants, destroying them. On top of that, part of the field did not receive adequate rain. And lots of weeds grew together with the rice plants. My family and I worked to gather all the waste created by the rats, spread some pesticides, and pulled all the weeds. We cleaned the dikes around the rice field, cleared and made an entry path for the water, and set rat traps.
At first, our efforts didn’t seem to be making a difference. But, after much ‘housekeeping,’ careful work, and perseverance, the rice began to grow better and better, day in and day out, until rain started to fall and bless the land. Praise God that the rain kept coming and soon we had adequate rain for the rice to grow. It was a good year for my field. I am grateful for the rain, and for Fountain of Hope!
I continued to care for the field until the rice was ripe for the harvest. Since I did not have the means to get my fields harvested by machine, as is done mostly now in my community, my family and I had to harvest the rice by hand. It was a lot of work, but I did not have to spend extra money to get my field harvested.
After the harvest, I took the rice to dry under the sun, beat the stalks, processed the grain, and produced the rice by myself. Though it was a lot of hard work, I am so glad because of the amount of harvest I received. It was truly a blessing—a better outcome than I expected. Because Fountain of Hope and Partners International provided training and the Seed Bank, it helps families like mine. I hope many other poor families can receive loans so that they can produce good harvests for their families. May the Lord bless you all with wisdom and peace.