A REPORT released earlier this month suggests that a growing number of education NGOs could soon find themselves scrambling to secure financial support, as backers re-evaluate their funding policies in response to the global economic downturn.
The NGO Education Partnership's (NEP) annual report, based on a survey completed by education NGOs in 18 provinces and Phnom Penh, found that an overwhelming majority - 78 of the 80 NGOs sampled - were "entirely dependent on financial support from their development partners" and thus "vulnerable to funding policy changes that will inevitably occur" as the downturn continues.
As of November 2008, when the survey was completed, 24 of the 80 NGOs "were still waiting for replies for 2009 funding", and two NGOs had been informed by their development partners that no funding would be available this year, the report said.
A lack of financial support was the most common challenge cited by NGOs involved in nonformal education activities.
Ly Somony, an undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, said Friday that he believed "maybe some small NGOs" would be affected by the crisis but that large ones would be able to continue operating at their current levels.
ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY MOM KUNTHEAR