Thirty-two exemplar families from the Kampong Phluk community in Siem Reap province have been awarded letters of commendation and cash prizes for their environmental stewardship. The initiative encourages the community towards clean living and a healthier environment with a focus on proper waste management.

The families were honoured on June 25 during a community eco-tourism event, part of the Clean Family Movement campaign. They received letters of recognition and a prize of one million riel ($250) after a thorough assessment. Kampong Phluk is a vibrant community of about 1,000 households, among which the 32 families were selected.

The model families hail from Kork Kdol, Tnot Kambot, and Dei Krohorm in the province’s Prasat Bakong district.

Oeun Srey Mom, a proud mother, said of her family: "I am happy to have this opportunity. I will continue this activity for my family's clean living and as a role model for other families, because it is important in proper storing and sorting garbage".

Alongside commendation and cash prizes, the 32 model families also received a 10kg bag of rice, confirmed Sea Sophal, director of the NGO2 BambooShoot Foundation. The foundation aims to laud these families while inspiring more families to take part in the programme.

The community eco-tourism event was held at Kampong Phluk community in Siem Reap province on June 25. The event is part of the Clean Family Movement campaign. PHOTO BY SOPHAL SEA

"This programme is a driving force to participate in the implementation of the Harvest Plastic Programme in the whole Kampong Phluk community. Our working group will continue to educate the community to properly store and sort garbage by the low water season this year. We are looking for another 70 clean families," Sophal elaborated.

Deputy provincial governor Khim Finan applauded the initiative. He emphasised the importance of community participation in tackling plastic waste management in the Tonle Sap area, noting its impact on health, biodiversity and tourism.

"What we are doing at this time is directly related to the environment, and it will have an immediate impact on tourism as this work that has potential in enhancing people's livelihood as well," he said.

"This work needs the participation of all concerned stakeholders to make the Kampong Phluk a model tourism community. Kampong Phluk has high potential among flooded communities in Tonle Sap River area in Cambodia," he said.