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From left to right: Em Phummany, Kin Kim Hen, Ngem Sosan and Khorn Van Thy.
 
Four Cambodian crews of FV Naham 3 who were held hostage by Somali pirates for four years and a half were released on 22nd October 2016 and arrived home on the Sunday night, 30th October 2016. Caritas Cambodia together with the General Secretariat of National Committee for Counter Trafficking (NCCT) has worked to provide support services to the seafarers.

Thanks the International Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN) for tremendous support. With the support from ISWAN, Caritas Cambodia is able to prepare a home welcoming package for the survivors.

Just a day of their arrival, the four survivors and the families were offered appropriate and warm care and support including medical check-up, medicines, psychosocial counseling, local transportation, accommodation and meals.
These assistances are facilitated by Caritas Cambodia in collaboration with the government. The result from psychosocial counseling carried out by Caritas’s professional and experienced counseling team- Center for Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CCAMH) program has shown all of them got some intrusive memories, but they are confident to reintegrate into their home, family and community. CCAMH is opened to provide further support and counseling both the survivors and their families when needed. Nevertheless, no major diseases have been found in the health check-up.
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Group meeting between the survivors and Caritas’s counseling team.
On the next day, Caritas and NCCT had prepared a formal welcoming meeting at Caritas office in Phnom Penh. The meeting did not only allow an opportunity for all of them to tell their story lives under hostage for nearly five years in Somalia but also to pay their gratitude to the government, NCCT, ISWAN, Caritas Cambodia and other supporters. The meeting had attracted huge media attention. Presided over the meeting by Her Excellency Chou Bun Eng, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Interior and the chair of General Secretariat of National Committee for Counter Trafficking extended thanks to ISWAN, Caritas and all partners for their support.
 
4w03A welcoming meeting at Caritas Cambodia Office, Phnom Penh on 01 November 2016
Apinya Tajit, representative from ISWAN expressed her delight to see the real smiles of the families who have lived separately from each other for many years. She thanked the government of Cambodia, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Social, Veteran and Rehabilitation, NGO partner organizations for such a wonderful arrangement and support.
FV Naham 3 was hijacked by Somali pirates in March 2012 and 29 member crews were captured. Among them, there are four Cambodian; two are from Kampong Cham, one from Kampong Chhnang and one from Kratie province.
 
4w04Apinya Tajit from ISWAN during her impression remark during a meeting between the survivors with the government, NGOs and media
All of them come from poor families. All expressed their hardship and suffer during captivity. "It is great to be going home and meet the family", said one of the survivors.  Another survivor said “I will not go anywhere because I do not want to risk my life again. I am going to stay with family and do farming”.
Caritas Cambodia will continue to assist and support the survivors and families. Ms. Tek Sopheak, Migration and Anti-trafficking Manager said “Caritas is committed to provide further support to the survivors and families and is planning reintegration plan for them so that they can be again reintegrate into their community.
 
4w05From left to right: H.E. Chou Bun Eng (NCCT), Apinya (ISWAN) and the four survivors
Caritas will not leave the families alone but we are preparing a 6-month plan after family reunion at their home provinces. “One of the most important thing we plan further support in their livelihood. We want to see all of them live a happy life”, emphasized Ms. Tek Sopheak.
 
From 03rd -6TH November 2016, Caritas will accompany the families back home, said Sopheak. Local authority, families and neighbors who are awaiting the arrival of the survivors had prepared Buddha’s blessing, a traditional Cambodian practice to bring luck, wishes, happiness and success, according to Sopheak.
 
4w07The seafarers and family are receiving Buddha’s blessing. Local authority, neighbors are participating
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