Benjamin Apra and Guilhelm Baschet in front of the Project office in Hpa-an, Kayin State
In support to microfinance and enterprise development, two French bikers – Benjamin Apra and Guilhelm Baschet – decided to visit 10 countries by bike and meet along the way people who have been touched by microfinance. Dubbed Au Bout de Soie, the biking duo visited the Project areas in February 2017. They met with some members of the cooperatives who have borrowed and started new enterprises.
The video-documentation of their engagement with the people in the villages are available in the internet through these links:
PlaNet Finance officially turned over equipment and materials to its partner institutions as part of project implementation. A total of 14 laptop computers were provided to partner institutions.These will be used in ensuring documentation and report preparation will be completed on time.
U Maung Maung Than, Hlaing-bwe Coop Officer receiving a laptop from Jay P. Supetran, PF Program Manager
Four (4) units of motorcycles for the use of Village Mobilizers and field staff of the Community Development Association were turned-over, with the remaining five (5) units for the Kayin State cooperative office and the Union of Cooperative Syndicate (UCS) to be turned-over after the Thingyan festival.
Dr. Than Naing receiving documentation for the transfer of motorcycles for the use of CDA field staff
First year activities were focused on preparations as the negotiations for a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Ministry of Cooperatives was on-going. Office set-up was completed together with the orientation sessions with the Ministry of Cooperatives, the Kayin State authorities the Hlaing-bwe township authorities and the 35 villages selected for the Project.
Project orientation with the Kayin State local government
Project orientation with the heads of villages in Hlaing-bwe township
A series of training activities were conducted participated by the CDA, the Kayin Cooperative Office and the local unit of the Union of Cooperative Syndicates (UCS).
Training on Participatory Rapid Rural Appraisal (PRRA)
Participants to the Cooperative formation training
Coordination with other development agencies and networks were also initiated. PF participated in seminars and fora organized by the Livelihood Trust Fund (LIFT), International Finance Corporation (IFC), UNDP Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and other Myanmar-based institutions. PF also hosted a meeting of the Microfinance Working Group (MFWG).
As part of the research activities, the Participatory Rapid Rural Appraisal (PRRA) of the Project areas were conducted and completed in January 2015. A value chain analysis on the rice industry in Hlaing-bwe was also completed with the assistance of the ESSEC Business School based in Singapore.
Social research using PRRA tools at the village level.