Rice Mill for Women
Thank you to all our donors, we have met our fundraising goal.
As part of Palmera’s sustainable livelihoods focus, Palmera will support the establishment of a rice mill business, a business fund and provide required capacity building for the women entrepreneurs. The project includes the purchase of equipment, construction of a facility and training to establish a rice mill that will provide milling service. Income from the rice mill business will be used to support expansion of the business. In addition, profits from the rice mill will be pooled in a business fund and used to make loans to other women to support new businesses. The rice mill will be managed by the women in the local community. To support the local area, rice milling will be provided at a subsidized cost to local farmers, these farmers can increase their profits.
This social business replicates a similar model implemented by OfERR, our on the ground partner, in war torn regions of east Sri Lanka.
- Provides a regular source of income for the beneficiaries, who are primarily women. This will enable the families of these women to access other basic needs such as food and water.
- Improves the business acumen of women headed households and other beneficiaries so that the rice mill business (and other business ventures) can continue successfully into the future.
- A combination of grants and loans encourages the beneficiaries to maintain the business and take ownership and responsibility for its operation. The profits from the rice mill will be pooled in a fund and used to make loans to other women to support new businesses.
- Will enable community members to access the rice mill at reduced cost, thereby enabling them to increase their profits and standard of living.
- Storage facilities for paddy will enable storage for use during low season months, offering regular income.
The Manthai West District in Mannar, Sri Lanka, is a region that was devastated by the civil war. Now, as displaced families return to their original village, they are faced with the challenge of starting their lives from scratch. Many women in this area were left widowed following the civil war, and there is little by way of livelihood opportunities in the region. Following the devastation of the civil war, this area has limited rice milling facilities available. As a result, community members are required to travel long distances to have their paddy milled. Both the travel and the rice milling services impose burdensome costs on the farmers.
The purpose of this project is to provide a sustainable livelihood to the beneficiaries, who are primarily women, and to establish a profit-making business. In addition to training the mill operators in the equipment, training will also be provided to the women to assist their understanding of business practices and procedures. The operation of the rice mill will be managed by the Women’s Rural Development Scheme (WRDS) – which is a community group comprising of one woman from each family in the area.
A grant and loan combination will be provided to the rice mill operators. A portion of the loan will be repaid once revenue is such that repayments are not burdensome on the beneficiaries. In addition, profits from the rice mill will be pooled in a fund from which new loans will be made to other women setting up new businesses. As such, the project has the potential to develop a range of new businesses in the area.
Finally, by providing milling services at a subsidized rate, the farmers in the community can have their rice milled at a reduced cost and increase their profits.