Todays CARE Package Contains Assurance During Medical Emergencies

Todays CARE Package Contains Assurance During Medical Emergencies

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One of the original CARE Packages© was a midwifery kit.

Today, CARE delivers lasting change by helping women prepare for medical and other emergencies.

Through CARE’s Village Savings and Loan Associations (VSLAs), women are able to save money and borrow from the group when faced with urgent needs. In one village in Cambodia, Chan was able to borrow from her VSLA to cover the costs of treating her son when he suddenly became ill and required hospitalization. Now that her son is completely recovered, Chan regularly invests her income with the VSLA group not only to build up her savings, but also to be able to take loans when needed.

She saves just over $1 a week with the VSLA, which allows her access to the accumulated funds as a loan with a low rate of interest. Before, if she didn’t have money to cover medical or other emergencies, she had to borrow from a microfinance institution, which always required a lot of documentation and took a long time.

Joining the VSLA has had a big impact on my family’s health. Saving with the group is helping me to put money aside for our children’s education and improving our farm.

- Chan

Chan had been reluctant to take part in other such savings groups, she said, because she didn’t fully understand how her savings were recorded and how loans were made. But when she joined the VSLA, CARE provided lots of training so she knew exactly where her money was going and how membership benefited everybody in the group.

Providing a trusted place to save money has helped Chan and many others not only pay for inevitable emergencies, but also to build a more secure future.