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Stories Form The Field


Maryam heads the Batarirak Pekka group in Balla Satanatean Village of Balla Sub-District in Mamasa District, West Sulawesi. She has seen herself transform in a positive way after joining the Pekka group. She now has the courage to speak in public, although sometimes still feeling slightly nervous. She actively facilitates and develops Pekka groups. In the past, she only stayed at home, never interacting with others. She now presides over every monthly Pekka group meeting.  


Another significant change in her life is being able to afford electricity and start a weaving enterprise with her own capital money. Maryam previously worked as a hired weaver. She gets her threads for weaving from another person, and upon completion of work she gets paid. From the Pekka group’s savings and loan activities, Maryam was able to borrow money as seed capital to buy threads when she receives an order. The profit that she gains from weaving are deposited with the group until IDR 2,500,000 were accumulated, which she then used to have an electrical power line installed at the house. She now enjoys electricity at her own home.    


Born in March 1983, Maryam lives in Balla Satanatean Village of Balla Sub-District in Mamasa District, West Sulawesi. She is married to a man who works as temporary staff at the local government office. They have two boys aged 12 and 9. As her husband is only a temporary employee, her contribution to the household income is vital to make ends meet. Apart from weaving, she also works as a farmhand in the rice fields.  


Maryam joined the Pekka group in October 2015. She was interested in the group because its activities suit her personal circumstances as an income earner for the family. When the group was formed and administrators elected, she was chosen to be the group leader. In addition to the usual savings and borrowing activities, the group also has a similar scheme for rice. In their monthly meetings, every member brings a liter of rice. Once the rice has been collected, they draw lots and the name picked out shall get the total amount of rice pooled and donate 1 liter to the group. The donated rice can be borrowed by members in need and must be replaced in stages.  The group also cultivates a vegetable garden through the permaculture system. Proceeds from the organic produce are reinvested as additional capital for the group’s savings and loan scheme. 

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