Since 2015, the Implementation of Social Accountability Framework (ISAF) initiated by World Vision International (WVI) Cambodia has been instrumental in enhancing local service delivery through increased accountability, fostering community engagement, and supporting education for tens of thousands of children across the country.

The ISAF initiative has made significant strides. Through ISAF, people are not only informed about entitled services but also engage in dialogues with sub-national authorities to identify and implement joint actions addressing issues.

According to a report issued by WVI Cambodia on January 3, the initiative has mobilised approximately 850,000 people, including public officials, benefiting close to 1,380,000 children in the capital and targeted provinces.

Beyond these numbers, the project actively conducts community-based activities to raise awareness about access to information at the local level, highlighting transparent fund utilisation in key services such as commune administration, health centres and education. This empowers citizens to participate in monitoring and evaluating public services, especially regarding income and expenditure.

The programme has not only achieved results in supporting the training and capacity building of public officials but has also played a role in facilitating children’s participation in numerous learning activities.

Highlighting the programme’s impact, the report specifically mentions the influence ISAF has had on commune administration and education services in Kandal province’s Leu Dek district.

An example is Kampong Chamlong Primary School, one of the 20 primary schools in the district which implemented ISAF at the end of 2020. This move has been transformative, especially considering the past practice of teachers at this school taking money from students.

Kampong Chamlong Primary School principal Va Samrith highlighted that with the promotion and implementation of ISAF, he and commune authorities collaborated to address and eliminate the issue of teachers requiring money from their pupils.

“Since then, teachers have ceased the practice. This solution involves raising community awareness about the transparent use of funds in key services,” he said.

The report also details the ISAF implementation at Chanlas Dai Health Centre in Siem Reap province’s Kralanh district.

Phum Saro, director of the health centre, said that prior to implementing ISAF, staff performance was lacking, and the service attitude towards people was deficient. Additionally, people hesitated to provide suggestions or requests related to their needs to staff.

“After implementing ISAF, we’ve witnessed numerous positive changes by identifying and rectifying health centre shortcomings. All staff have corrected these issues, focusing on providing friendly and ethical services, with particular emphasis on punctuality,” he said.

He said that his particular interest lies in pregnant women attending regular prenatal check-ups. In general, the increased number of people utilising services is due to their confidence and satisfaction with the quality and service provided by the health centre medical staff.