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Our Global, Rural Workforce

Nancy A. Scherl | Various

A Laotian woman carries lumber as she walks on a country road in Laos.

  The past decade, I have traveled extensively throughout South America, Africa and Asia. When I travel I am intriqued and inspired by the people and the culture of a place. One of the things that strikes me so much, is how  integral to their land the people in these countries are. Whether it's working in the rice paddies in Thailand, or fishing on Lake Inle, in Myanmar, the agricultural assets of a place are always discovered by their people.  Young children learn to pitch in with daily chores even it means taking care of a younger brother or sister while their mothers toil the land in the background. Older people are eager to continue working until they can't. There is tremendous pride reflected in the faces of those that are in the midst of physically exerting themselves, in the hot sun –those who are carrying heavy jugs or bags while balancing them on their heads or shoulders, and those who are herding their cattle or toiling the land. What might be considered to be mundane to some, could also be extraordinarily distinct and unique to others. For not a whole lot of pay, the craftsmanship, effort and determination of people that occurs in the countryside, across the world, is evident.

Nancy A. Scherl



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