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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Upholding dignity

In Cambodia, Lutheran organization turns management over to residents

Mey Ny, 60, rises early each day to support her family of six. The morning is still gray when she mixes rice powder with a little sugar and water and pounds bananas flat. Coating the bananas with the milky mixture, she spoons them into a frying pan. As the cooking oil hisses and sputters, the batter expands into a crispy, golden brown shell. More moist and sweeter than scones, these popular snacks are snapped up by Mey’s neighbors, along with the khmer cakes and noodles she also has for sale.

Mey Ny, 60, started a snack-making
Mey Ny, 60, started a snack-making business with a loan from Lutheran World Federation Cambodia.
In rural Cambodia, small businesses like Mey’s can provide a family with extra income to buy food, build a house or send children to school. But most families lack the capital for such an enterprise, and high-interest loans from local lenders are more risky than rewarding.


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