Thursday, September 17, 2009

SEDA launches 6 Week Awareness Campaign On Poverty In Laos

From Asian Week:

Vientiane, Laos: The Social and Economic Developers Association (SEDA) Laos, is launching a six week awareness and fund raising campaign, from August 21st until September 31st, to draw the world’s attention to poverty in Laos.

As preparations continue for the South East Asia (SEA) Games, being held in Vientiane, the capital of Laos in December, SEDA is urging people not to forget about the ongoing struggle against poverty.

SEDA is asking that people around the world donate as little as $1 to the campaign. The money raised will go towards one of SEDA’s main project areas; Micro-Finance.

SEDA’s innovative Micro-Finance project provides small loans to entrepreneurs in Laos, particularly farmers wishing to expand their businesses and women with craft skills. Unlike many micro-finance schemes in developing countries, SEDA offers a very low rate of interest, of between 1.5% and 5%, and provides the necessary training to participants for their businesses to become a success.

“People in Laos are very excited to host the Games; it is a great honour and an opportunity for improvements to the city. But with the eyes of the world on Laos, we must not forget the real problems that people here face every day. We are fighting for a long term solution to poverty” Souly QuachAngkham, Founder and Director of SEDA

Laos has the lowest UNDP human development index of all South East Asia, with 75% of people living on less than $2 a day. Education remains poor; the Laos government allocation for education is among the lowest in the world. Lack of food and clean drinking water also huge problems; 50% of children suffer from malnourishment, and 40% exhibit stunted growth.

SEDA helps the poorest families, with special attention on women (including, single mothers and widows), no income families and people with disabilities.

For information or contact

The Social and Economic Developers Association (SEDA) was created to bring sustainable economic and social change to the disadvantaged people of Laos. SEDA is a non-profit Laos-based organization, dedicated to improving education and health, and providing economic opportunities for a long-term solution to poverty - and a brighter future for the Lao PDR.

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