Angkatan Zaman Mansang Sarawak (AZAM Sarawak) and Sarawak Development Institute (SDI) kick-started the new year with a study visit to Hanoi, Vietnam from 14th to 19th January 2018.
The objective of this five-day study visit was to learn from Institute of Policy and Strategy for Agriculture and Rural Development (IPSARD) and Centre for Sustainable Rural Development (SRD) on the development policies, initiatives and strategies Vietnam adopted to accelerate development sustainably in the country.
The study visit also enabled AZAM and SDI members to explore ways on how to engage rural communities to ensure sustainability not only for rural development but also for the rural economy.
About 16 delegates comprising AZAM Board Members, SDI Board Members and secretariat from both organisations attended the five-day study visit to Hanoi.
The study group visited IPSARD on the first day of the trip to learn how the institute improved on its quality of research and information activities in Vietnam’s new context of development.
They also made a field visit to SRD’s project area at Ninh Hai commune in Thanh Hoa Province where they observed how their capacity-building programmes empowered “single women-headed households” and made them more confident in business management.
At Ninh Hai commune, they met and had discussions with their Commune People’s Committee (CPC) leaders and the Women’s Union, observing the “3 partners collaboration” model in purchasing and processing seafood products, specifically their fish sauce products, for the Tinh Gia Fish Sauce Joint Stock Company.
They also participated at a regular meeting of the Village Saving Loan Associations (VSLA) group at Dai Tien village hall. There is only one women’s association made up of entrepreneurs. Funded by the VSLA, the association targeted specifically for single women provides them a platform to share what they are doing, their experiences, success stories, challenges among others.