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Driving Women’s Entrepreneurial Talent

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Driving Women’s Entrepreneurial Talent

Mar 30, 2021

Coming from a struggling second-generation farming family with original roots bound to the business of traditional gemstone mining in Pailin Province, Ouern Samon shares her life journey of transformation, accomplishment and success with us.

Q1. Tell us about yourself
Married with two children, I am 33 years old and own a longan farm and trading business in Pailin. Starting with just two hectares of farming land, I now own a 13-hectare longan plantation in my hometown that distributes up to 10 tonnes of fresh longan every week. I was born into a traditional gemstone mining family. Although my parents were struggling financially when I was growing up, they managed to provide adequately for us during the mining boom. However, it all changed drastically when my father passed away unexpectedly in 1999. And being a widowed single parent, my mother had to shoulder the sole responsibility of supporting a family with two young children. Years later with the gemstone mining industry in decline, our family’s financial situation deteriorated to the point that on some days my mother was unable to generate any income at all. This prompted her to turn to farming in order to supplement the family’s meagre income derived from mining work as I turned 15.

Although my mother’s venture into farming provided our family with an additional source of income, it did very little to make a big difference. It all improved and changed for the better financially for the family when I got married and started a longan business in 2010.