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Group photo of community leaders, village development associations, local authority, key stakeholders and Caritas Cambodia.
 
Caritas Cambodia’s Community Development Program carried out in five districts of Kampong Cham province was officially closed on 28th June 2016. The closing event was held in Ponhea Krek district, Thbaung Khmom province in the presence of local authority, community leaders, Village Development Association committees and members, representatives of provincial department of agriculture and rural development and Caritas Cambodia. This event aims to officially inform local authority, target communities, partners and all key stakeholders about the closing of Community Development Program in the provincial’s 5 districts of Dambe, O Raingov, Ponhea Krek, Krauch Chhmar and Prey Chhor.
The closing ceremony marked the end of the program which has been implemented in the province for over the last 18 years and an opportunity to reflect and celebrate the achievements of the program that has helped to contribute to a hug change in the lives of the people and the community.

In 1996, Caritas Cambodia started its emergency program in Kampong Cham province. Until 1998, Community Development Program then began under the support from Caritas Australia and the Catholic Church in Kampong Cham province. Up to 2016, the program has worked in 26 villages, 8 communes, and 5 districts of Kampong Cham and Thbaung Khom province.

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Community leaders, village development associations, local authority and key stakeholders took part in the closing ceremony on 28th June 2016
Ms. Phene Sodaramy, program manager of Community Development Program in Kampong Cham province thanked all target communities, Village Development Associations, the provincial department of agriculture and rural development for their collaboration.

She added the support and involvement of all key stakeholders has substantially contributed to a big change of the communities. “For example, one of the greatest achievements is the establishment of the Village Development Associations and Agriculture Cooperatives that are now strong enough to carry out their development project”, she added.

Mrs. Tuy Roth, representative of the Samrose Daun Tey Village Development Association gave a brief report of the achievements. She praised the role of the project that has played a crucial role in her community through a wide range of activities including capacity building program ( leadership, management, budgeting, reporting, planning, agricultural technique), financial and material support, income generation activities, construction and rehabilitation of physical infrastructures(road, well, canal, bridge etc). On behalf of the community, she thanked Caritas Australia and the Catholic Church in Kampong Cham that has funded the program through Caritas Cambodia.

Caritas Cambodia is proud to work with the communities and applauded what they achieve today. During the ceremony, Mr. Kim Rattana, Caritas Cambodia Executive Director said he is honored to attend the event as an important occasion to close out the project and conveyed his sincere appreciation to all the communities, local authority and partners who have substantially contribute to the success of the program. He said: “All the achievements would not have been taken place without strong support and involvement of all communities, local authority and key stakeholders”.

Community Development Program has come to an end. Yet, Caritas Cambodia will continue to work and support the communities. According to Mr. Rattana, Caritas will work with the communities in the implementation of 1/ the rural credit program; 2/ provision of technical support (food processing); and 3/ promoting marketing access for the rural poor and their agricultural products. “I hope that we will continue to collaborate and work together in the future”, Mr. Rattana spoke of his motivation.

Daun Tey commune chief, Mr. Prek Nhim shared his impression of the program. “Our communities were inspired by the effort and support of Caritas Cambodia and other key stakeholders who helped us to broaden our view and understanding on sustainable development”. He added earlier his community has faced many challenges, especially in the livelihoods. “Thanks Caritas Cambodia for your continued support in the three programs, particularly on the rural credit program. We know that we will continue to work harder”, he emphasized.

Other community leaders also shared acknowledgment and appreciation of the program.  Representative from Treung Samaki Mean Chey Village Development Association said despite the end of the program but she shared her high commitment to make the Agricultural Cooperative to grow stronger. 

 
close03Mr. Prek  Nhim, commune chief of Daun Tey shared his impression of the program
In addition, she said “she hopes that local authority and the provincial department of agriculture and rural development as well as Caritas Cambodia will continue to work the communities through guidance, ideas, experience and best practices sharing”.

Caritas Cambodia thanked all participants attended the closing event. The ceremony ended by participants having a solidarity lunch.

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