June 05, 2024

Meet Mary Ann.

She grew up on a farm as the second youngest of 10 children. Making ends meet was always a challenge but her parents worked tirelessly to get her and her siblings through high school. College was never an option. It was much too costly and the kids all needed to work right away to support themselves. 

Mary Ann got married, started working on the family farm with her husband, and had five children of her own. Life was very full and she was constantly stressed about putting food on the table and providing education for her kids. She wanted them to be able to go to college and achieve what she did not. Even though the family coconut farm was doing well, the weather was unreliable, the work was very demanding, and they rarely got fair payment. Buyers would take advantage of them and it took a long time for money to come in. 

When Dignity offered to partner with the family, Mary Ann thought it would be the same as other businesses. She was surprised at the great prices she was getting paid for her coconuts and thankful she no longer had to process the copra (dried meat of the coconut used to make refined coconut oil) before selling it. Dignity would buy the whole coconut to prevent waste which saved her family so much time and energy. The money also came in much faster and there were free farming courses for them to take. 

In a way, Mary Ann’s dream of being able to go to college was coming true through Dignity’s skills-training program (e.g. financial literacy, health & hygiene, clean water, etc.). She could go to seminars to grow her knowledge and gain an entire farming community. Mary Ann is a hardworking farmer and mother who does all she can to support her family’s dreams. There was no longer an environment of competition and greed like before. Instead, she and her husband felt supported and hopeful that their family would thrive.

 





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