What is Community Economic Development?
In the daily battle against poverty, employment plays a critical role in changing lives, instilling hope, and empowering individuals to believe they can create a better future for themselves and their families.
Community Economic Development (CED) is action taken locally by a community to provide economic opportunities and improve social conditions in a sustainable way. CED initiatives aim to create alternative livelihoods for the poor, vulnerable and marginalized by “localizing economics” through a community-centered process that blends social and economic development to foster the economic, social, ecological and cultural well-being of communities.
Step Ahead, working closely with community members and leaders, has gradually explored and expanded into a variety of economic stimulation activities to support community development and capacity building from designer ladies purses to growing orchids and mushrooms, and even breeding goats.
What has been achieved?
Over the years, Step Ahead has launched a variety of new community economic development initiatives including a mushroom farm and three homestay bungalows in a sea gypsy village. Our long-standing initiative, Thai Totes® purse project, was first launched in Khao Lak with natural swamp grass material and opened the doors to Italian style woven leather ITSERA purses in Pattaya and now in the Northeast of Thailand (Isaan). Each purse is made of locally sourced, high quality materials following internationally recognized fair trade standards.
New partnership opportunities in Bangkok, Khao Lak, and the Northeast are waiting to be developed to bring more impact and opportunities for families at-risk, and people living with HIV/ Aids.