Germany and the World Food Programme (WFP) announced they will provide nearly $6 million in cash assistance to support the economic recovery of vulnerable Cambodian families affected by Covid-19 and climate-related disasters in order to prevent them from falling further into poverty.
In a joint press statement released on September 27, Germany and WFP said they had entered into a new partnership to support lower-income Cambodian families affected by the pandemic and natural disasters such as flooding or droughts.
The statement said the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, through the Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), has committed €5 million ($6 million) to provide cash assistance to vulnerable households to support their recovery.
The partners will also support the Cambodian government to enhance the responsiveness of social protection schemes to strengthen the population’s resilience.
The assistance came because the Covid-19 pandemic has caused profound socio-economic impacts on Cambodia’s vulnerable population, compounded by climatic shocks such as the devastating floods of late 2020, the statement said.
“Covid-19 and severe flooding have only added to the challenges faced by these already vulnerable people. Reports show that many of the most vulnerable households hit by these two shocks have reduced their food consumption, sold productive assets, and taken on debt to meet basic needs.
“We are pleased to be able to support those in needs to meet their food and nutrition needs and support their recovery,” said WFP representative Claire Conan.
WFP will use the IDPoor database from the Ministry of Planning and disaster-related information from the Platform for Real-time Information System to identify poor households affected by the floods and Covid-19.
“We are keen to develop an operational model for Cambodia’s future shock-responsive social assistance scheme. In so doing, we will be able to identify new ways to enhance social assistance and disaster response programmes, meaning families in the future will be much more ready and resilient when shocks do occur,” said Conan.
According the statement, targeted households will receive cash transfers in addition to what they are receiving from the government’s Covid-19 emergency cash handout.
German ambassador to Cambodia Christian Berger said Germany is proud to have supported IDPoor together with Australia for over a decade. The German government and the Kingdom’s planning ministry have been enhancing IDPoor and the registry now covers all of Cambodia. IDPoor is instrumental in the response to Covid-19, the ambassador said.
“In this additional collaboration with WFP, we are using a data-driven approach with IDPoor to help vulnerable groups including children, older persons and women in recovering and building resilience,” he added.