All of our initiatives are aimed at improving the livelihoods and well-being of the poorest of the poor. Improving and diversifying agriculture both lifts people out of poverty and protects natural resources from overexploitation.
From 2015 onward, CRDT has introduced a single community organizing model for community groups and an Integrated Implementation Strategy. Group members comprise both on and off farm producers/small businessmen. Regardless of the livelihoods in each community group, saving is a mandatory component.
Sustainable Livelihoods Development Program
Taking into account the climate change impacts on rural areas of Cambodia, all of our initiatives are aimed at improving the livelihoods and well-being of the disadvantaged poor. Improving and diversifying sustainable agriculture both lifts people out of poverty and protects natural resources from overexploitation.
We provide the technical skills which climate smart so that animal husbandry is more lucrative than timber. We introduce vegetable growing to provide an alternative to fishing and it also improves health and nutrition. People living in rural Cambodia rarely eat vegetables; 100% of our vegetable beneficiaries said since they started eating vegetables their family is healthier. Simple but effective — a desirable recipe for food security. We also work on improving market access for local people’s produce, substantially improving incomes.
We also help improve people’s access to water and thus they improve sanitation, introduce waste management and provide renewable energy all of which not only have environmental benefits but make real and tangible impacts on rural population’s living standards.
Our environmental education joins the dots and explains concepts of sustainability and stewardship, that overexploitation has short term benefits and long term repercussions.
Entrepreneurship Development Program
Since 2006, CRDT has incorporated ‘Entrepreneurial Approach’ in its poverty reduction strategies. We believe that for a development project to be sustainable, its beneficiaries must be first built capacity, empowered on resources needs and business skills then linked directly to the markets. Within this strategy, we define enabling environment is crucial to boost project outcomes. Stakeholders are involved to actively work with farmer producers/entrepreneurs and both obtain mutual social and economic benefits.
Using ecotourism as a social enterprise initiative, make even more of a direct link, as tourists come to see the dolphins! The communities were built capacity to host tourists warmly and provide services professionally. CRDTours then continue to work to bring tourists to communities.
Le Tonle Tourism and Hospitality Training Center was handed over by Tourism for Help to CRDT in 2012. The center while providing training course to students, also runs a restaurant and a guesthouse where students can practice their skills. The profit from this business is used to support the training itself and CRDT.
So far CRDT has mobilized 2560 families, 87% woman, into Self Help Group (SHG), and promoted $150,000 USD internal savings, which has been used as loan disbursement of $400,000 USD on rotation. This has supported and created 2000 Families Based Enterprises (FBEs) in 95 villages, 40 communes, 9 districts in the northeast provinces of Kratie and Stung Teng. CRDT had also provided vocational skill training to 250 families on agriculture and off farm based to promote a viable and sustainable market value chains for farmer producer groups with a range of products such as vegetables, livestock, tailoring, beautician, and solar battery charging station. SHG Finance Plc was transformed into a social enterprise of CRDT and continue to support all SHGs to operate and improve their members’ small and micro businesses. In February 2016, SHG Finance plc was awarded a license as a Rural Credit Operator from the National Bank of Cambodia.