Cambodia is recovering from the effects of decades of civil unrest. The impact of social engineering under the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s and subsequent civil conflict left the country decimated, impoverished and traumatised.
Food security: food security is one of the biggest challenges people in Cambodia face, and despite recent economic development at least 18% of the population often go hungry.
The effects of climate change and a rush on land for mainly commercial purposes are limiting the ability of millions of rural households to feed themselves.
Women: traditionally seen as subservient in society, women in Cambodia continue to suffer from the legacy of war as they are vulnerable to extreme physical and sexual violence.
Trafficking, arising from poverty and powerlessness, is a widespread problem. Unequal access to education has created a female literacy rate of only 64%, 20% less than the male literacy rate.
HIV/AIDS: thanks to government and NGO efforts, HIV rates among of 15 – 49 year olds have declined from 2.1% to 0.8% in a decade. However, young people remain vulnerable to HIV infection due to stigma and lack of knowledge surrounding sexual health.
Gender-based violence, commercial sex work, lack of access to basic healthcare and low levels of education all contribute to the spread of HIV.
Christian Aid has been working in Cambodia since 1979 after the fall of the Khmer Rouge regime. In 2008 Christian Aid created a joint programme with DanChurchAid, our first completely integrated programme in collaboration with another ACT Alliance agency.
We are working with 25 partners addressing:
• secure livelihoods
• gender inequality and
While working to empower people and increase their resilience at a local level, some of our partners also work to challenge and change the structures and policies that keep people poor. Partners like Development Partnership in Action and NGO Forum are active members of regional climate change and tax networks.
Life With Dignity (LWD) works to empower rural communities and improve governance. Its holistic approach enables communities to organise their own development through projects involving agriculture, irrigation, education, climate change adaptation and low carbon, pro-poor energy.
Through this work LWD is transforming tens of thousands of lives in remote rural areas of Cambodia.
Cambodian Women’s Crisis Centre works to empower women through education and skills training by addressing gender-based violence and promoting equality.
Its crisis centres support women recovering from violence and abuse. It also works with men to promote gender equality and it helps women in remote rural areas set up their own businesses and saving groups.
Mith Samlanh works with marginalised young people including street children and drug users. It provides educational, medical and emotional support, working with 1,800 children each day.
Christian Aid funds their outreach and HIV work, enabling them to support all street children and ensure HIV is addressed in every aspect of their lives.
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