From wood to cement

Ronalyn and her family used to live in a house made of light wooden materials but everything changed when she learned how to save and managed their finances.

A few years back, Ronalyn would worry about her children's safety even if they were inside their home. With a house made of unfurnished bamboo lumber and light plywood material with nail heads surfacing from random places, an accident was just waiting around the corner especially for her youngest child, Joshua, who was at that time active in developing his motor skills.

 

The location of their house has not always been an ideal one. Right outside their front yard is the main highway that runs from Cebu City to the rural towns in the southern part of the province. Buses and other vehicles run through the highway like ambulances. Only a short, poorly built fence made of bamboo poles stood between the family's property and the killer road. Ronalyn would always worry about her son while attending to house chores.

 

Bur there is always a solution to every problem. The 37-year-old housewife realized that when she joined a savings group introduced by World Vision. The organization has been in Ronalyn's community for quite a time already, doing development projects – one of which is to train families how to save and manage their finances.

 

She joined the group with other parents. Together, they save money twice a month and borrow from the pool savings when urgent needs would arise. 

 

This was when Ronalyn was finally able to save for the house repair. She and her husband, who works as an electrical technician, had been planning for it before but their limited finances always kept their plans at bay.

 

After saving P100 each session for a year, Ronalyn had enough to buy cement and other construction materials. The family finally upgraded their seemingly makeshift house to a sturdier and safer one. The house repair amounted to P15,000 – all of which Ronalyn got from her savings and a few loans from the group.

 

For her next project, she saved for the construction of a decent fence made or cement and iron bars which totaled to around P7,000. “We feel safer now that we have a new fence. Now, I don’t have to worry about road accidents,” Ronalyn said. 

 

To further grow her finances, Ronalyn invested a part of her savings to support her small pastry business. The resourceful mother also posts photos of the products for online buyers. She earns an average of P300 a day.

 

Since she started saving through CoMSCA, Ronalyn has never seen a day where her budget is out of track. It has become her principle to save first before spending. 

 

Seeing other families who are in the same situation as her before, she feels the need to advocate and encourage them to save. “Gambling is very common here in our community. I want to advocate CoMSCA to my neighbors who gamble their money instead of saving it. I think this is very helpful to them,” Ronalyn emphasized.

 

Ronalyn’s story is just one of the many testimonies told by families supported by World Vision. She is a member of Community Managed Savings and Credit Association (CoMSCA), an economic development project of World Vision. Support the organization to help more families become sustainable.World Vision/May 11, 2017

 

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