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It May Look Like A Basket Of Cash, But It's *So* Much More Than That

Saving cash can be overwhelming, especially when times are tight. It can also be a challenge if you're doing it on your own.

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These women prove that building a nest egg doesn't have to be a one-man show (or a one-woman show, for that matter).

Meet Ho Thi Lien:

She's 30 years old. She lives with her husband, daughter, and in-laws in a small village in Vietnam.


Money is tight.

After paying for the basics, saving cash was hard.

"I wanted to buy everything. I couldn't save money for the Lunar New Year celebrations."

The Vietnam Women's Union teaches women how to be financially independent and manage their money.

She joined the group, which is made up of other women with the same problem.

Together they save money as a community and manage small loans to help them create businesses and support their families.

"All members will give their month savings to the accountant. Once all the money is counted, we ask if anybody is in financial difficulty and needs help."

The goal is to promote gender equality within their community while encouraging entrepreneurship.

So far, Ho Thi Lien's local group has helped her pay for her daughter's school fees, feed her family, and buy a pig for her farm. She also now has a savings account.

"The money I borrow from the group helps us to buy food and clothes, so I can save money to spend on my family at the end of the year. Since joining, me and my family feel more confident and comfortable."

Ho Thi Lien is one of almost 2,000 members of the Village Savings and Loan Programme who live in the surrounding area.

To date, they've racked up a communal savings of over $400K. Members use the loans to support local agriculture, small businesses, and their households ... so it's a win-win for all.

To get more deets on this project, check out this video.

Photo: Jason DeCrow for United Nations Foundation

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