Indonesia

Indonesia: Reudeup's donated boats: One month after

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Jakarta, Indonesia-Relief - One month has passed since fishermen in Reudeup village, subdistrict of Pante Raja, Pidie, in the east coast of Aceh, fishermen received boat donations and back to business. Last week, attended by facilitator of the economic recovery project, ACT Dompet Duafa, they held a meeting to evaluate what they had reached so far.

The project result is welcoming enough. Using boats donated by Peduli Ummat Waspada, an Islamic tax agency established by Medan based Waspada daily, they could generate steady income. And as already agreed, they could put 10 percent of their income to the group collective fund. Totally, the group already have saving about Rp. 2,013,400. It means, in a month the fishermen group has generated income about Rp. 20,134,000.

In implementing the program, ACT-Dompet Dhuafa, a DART and community development unit of Dompet Dhuafa (an Islamic tax agency established by Jakarta based Republika daily), splits 90 households of Reudeup fishermen into three groups. Bidadari (Angel), Bahagia (Happiness), and Doa Bersama (Community Prayer). Together they received 45 boats: 35 boats donated by Peduli Umat Waspada, another 10 from Solo Peduli. One boat for two households.

The evaluation meeting revealed that of the Rp. 2,013,400 group saving, Rp 900,900 received from Bidadari group. Another Rp 700,000 from Doa Bersama, while Bahagia group only saved Rp 412,500. The difference amount of money saved is depending on how long they have been back to the sea. As Bahagia is the latest group in receiving boats donation, they share to the saving is lower than the other groups.

The fishermen also discussed about boats owners that in the past 25 days didn't save their income to the group saving. Some of them said they couldn't get enough fish or shrimp because of the season. Another boat owners said they are still in learning how to use the boat and the fishing equipment, as they used to be not fishermen. Another said that they haven't use the boat yet.

In selling the fish, the groups also compete with each other in providing fish to the 'toke' (fish buyers or collectors). During the meeting the group agreed to arrange a new scheme that will enable all groups members to sale their fish to the same toke, including quota that will be determined depend on their fishing result. As the 'toke' are also the group members, the toke agreed to make contribution to the group saving.

Jajang Fadli, ACT-Dompet Dhuafa facilitator, told the group that he is happy with the group progress. He believes the group income could increase if all the boats have been deployed. So he asks the group to ask another members that haven't use the boat yet to go on sail. All members should abide the group agreement, as it is for the progress of their own business, and not for ACT-Dompet Dhuafa or the boat donators.

Fadli also reiterated that the group saving is not credit payments to ACT-Dompet Dhuafa or donators. It is the group money and to be used by the group to develop their business when they think the time has come to expand their economic activities. And to ensure accountability and security, he suggests the group save it in the bank.

In the meeting, the group also agreed to conduct more regular meeting to share their experience and communicate intensively with each other. Fadli agreed with them, but he added that it is not about how intense they meet each other, but the quality of their meeting.