The Council for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) and four NGOs are jointly implementing a project for improving the food and nutrition security and resilience of vulnerable farming households in Banteay Meanchey province.

The project, which was launched on February 7, will run for a period of two and a half years through May 2025.

The project is implemented in Phnom Srok, Preah Netr Preah, Mongkol Borei and Thma Puok districts and is supported by Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through the four organisations: World Vision International, World Vision Germany, Wathnakpheap and Sovanna Phum.

“The project is expected to benefit 900 households in 16 farming communities with 51 health centres,” World Vision said in a statement.

Last year, more than 170,000 households in 14 towns and provinces across Cambodia were affected by floods and drought, including over 40,000 households and more than 20,000 children in Banteay Meanchey, according to the statement.

Leng Vireak, World Vision Cambodia’s operations director, said the project will have a positive impact on vulnerable households by changing their mindsets and attitudes as well as encourage participation through capacity building techniques and activities.

“The project also supports and pushes for the increasing of incomes of vulnerable households through market linkages and facilitates the functioning of farming communities. Moreover, the project will have a positive outcome on many vulnerable children. The reason is that with the growth of working capacity and income of parents and guardians, that will lead to a good environment for children for both health and studying,” he said.

CARD deputy secretary-general Say Ung said that solutions related to food and nutrition security are not only in response to the government’s priorities, but also contribute significantly to reducing poverty, resilience to vulnerabilities, crises and other problems, especially reducing the impacts of climate change.

“Food and nutrition security are important inter-sectoral issues in contributing to the development of capital, human resources, economic prosperity and social equity. We urge all stakeholders to continue to work together and join CARD to end hunger, achieve food security, enhance nutrition and build sustainable agriculture in Cambodia,” he said.

According to the World Food Programme, in the last two years the cost of staple foods for daily life has increased from 17 to 42 per cent of income for poor households as of July, 2022.

Food and nutrition security have affected the development of society, especially vulnerable households’ livelihoods and causing other health issues.

Sok Heng, the CEO Sovanna Phum that implements this project at the local level, said the current assistance will enable his organisation to work with the community under the cooperation of local authorities to improve knowledge in the community about nutrition and agricultural methods.

Heng Chan Thon, director of Wathnakpheap, said: “In order to achieve the project as planned, it’s through strengthening the cooperation of all stakeholders, such as local civil society officials and local authorities to support the poor vulnerable households equally and transparency.”