CRDT’s Staff: Living and Working in the Field

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One of the unique Five Approaches that CRTD adopted when working with the local communities is Living and Working in the Field. How is this approach translated into reality by CRDT’s staff? How has CRDT’s staff struggled to bring changes and improvements to the beneficiaries in the most remote areas of Cambodia?

Gartie village is located about 30 km away from Keoseima district town, in Mondulkiri province. CRDT has been working with the local Bunong communities there since 2006 after accepting the invitation from WCS to collaboratively intervene to promote sustainable agriculture for the community in order to provide them with alternative non forest-based livelihoods.

The project staff in Mondulkiri consist of Mr. Meas Viphou, project manager; Mr. Hach Chhorn, project officer; and Mr. Noem Sokhaim, project assistant. They are implementing a 3-year project entitled “Reducing Poverty and Food Insecurity for Ethnic Bunong Communities in Support of Forest Conservation in Mondulkiri”. Gartie is one the 6 project’s target villages. A monitoring trip from 16 to 18 Oct, 2013 by senior staff of CRDT, in Gartie has brought into their attention the hard work and commitment shown every day by our field staff. They regularly travel for two hours by motorbike on the bumping rocky road to provide training, facilitate practices, and monitor the project activities with the local indigenous people.

The road is even worse during the rainy season, but that did not diminish our staff’s effort and commitment in implementing the project activities in their work plan. According to Mr. Chhorn, Project Officer in Mondulkiri, he has to travel to Gartie village 2 to 3 times a month to monitor the livelihood activities that they introduced to farmers. He also travels to other remote villages and challenges can be similar or even more difficult than this road. He said “If I stay and struggle to work against all these hardships it is because I love to be on board with CRDT team who dynamically work to help the rural poor who are in desperate poverty and to promote environmental conservation along.”

Thank you to our project staff in Mondulkiri for being with us (CRDT families) and for their high commitment to work in remote areas and face all kinds of challenges to train communities on how to do sustainable agriculture to improve their livelihood in the Seima Biodiversity Conservation Area. They deserve to be praised not only for their good work but also for their wholehearted care for the people whom they are helping. You Are Super Heroes!

By Ul Socheat, Partnership Manager

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