Making and kiln-drying bricks is a common business in the area where Dayaal* and Sahni live. This couple, like many others around them, operates a brick making business. During the four winter months when Dayaal is unable to farm, he and his wife work together to make and dry thousands of bricks. First, they dig clay from a pit, then form it into the proper shape with a mold. Next, they fire the bricks in a kiln. Cooling is the final step in this process. For every thousand bricks Dayaal and Sahni make, they receive $66 USD. This income is extremely valuable in providing for themselves and their young daughter.
When Dayaal is not operating his brick making business, he raises rice on an acre of rented land. To pay his rent, he gives half of his annual harvest to the landowner. He stores the rest of his crop for his family’s future use. Since one bag of rice costs approximately $13 USD, a good supply of rice is a great help to the family.
Dayaal testifies that the SALT savings group in his remote poverty-stricken village helped him improve his management of his brick business. He and Sahni have been members of this savings group since it began. When asked about the savings group, Dayaal responded, “The teaching is really good and helps me manage my business and home better.” He mentioned his appreciation for all aspects of the group, especially for the ability to receive loans from the group’s own savings. “The group helps me save money instead of wasting it,” he shared.
When the SALT manager for this country visited Dayaal and Sahni’s village during the first months of the savings group’s term, he was encouraged. Together, the group had already saved enough money to give five small loans to their members.
God is opening exciting doors through the SALT program. Through savings groups, microloans, vocational schools, and teaching, opportunities abound to share the Gospel. Please pray for this work in villages like Dayaal and Sahni’s, that the news of salvation would reach hearts of people in the places where SALT operates.
*Names in this article are changed to protect identities.