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Village Assessment for Ockenden Cambodia_Sreng Sopheap

Village Assessment for Ockenden Cambodia_Sreng Sopheap

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Published by Sreng Sopheap
This paper looks at the village needs of the implementation for further planning at Ockenden Cambodia, Ratanakiri. It asks the following questions.
1) What are you current problems and needs
2) What are your expectations for you and your village in the next five years
3) What are your expectations for you and your village in the next ten years
This paper looks at the village needs of the implementation for further planning at Ockenden Cambodia, Ratanakiri. It asks the following questions.
1) What are you current problems and needs
2) What are your expectations for you and your village in the next five years
3) What are your expectations for you and your village in the next ten years

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Published by: Sreng Sopheap on Jun 06, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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 Village Needs AssessmentinRatanakiri Province
 Assessment facilitated and consolidated by:Sreng Sopheap With contributions and assistance from Mith Chanratha, Tania Heath, Mich Kosal, Pheaoun,Romam Yong , Sol Chan and Sol Pil All views written here do not necessarily reflect the views of Ockenden CambodiaOckenden Cambodia: Village 5, Banlung Town, Ratanakiri Province, Cambodia3
rd
Jan 2010
 
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Acknowledgements
I would like to convey my sincere thanks to the cooperation and collaborations by all thevillage chiefs, deputy village chiefs and elderly respected community members of the eightvillages who permitted us to engage with the villagers of all gender and classes of thesociety.I would like to extend my thanks to the Ockenden Cambodia Ratanakiri Office team whohave made all necessity arrangements and logistics for the assessment to be conducted,particularly my most humble appreciation to Mr. Mich Kosal and Mith Chanratha who havebeen very helpful in all the assessment processes started from a very early to a very latenight by 10pm. Their enormous commitments are greatly acknowledged. I also would liketo extend my thanks to Tania Heath for her invaluable input and some proof checking.Last but not least, my greatest acknowledgement is also handed all men and women of community representative members as well as children who contributed their activeparticipation in making the assessment a real possible of the actual needs from the bottomof their hearts. Without their most welcoming and allowing us to understand their situations,feeling their needs and be a part of their solutions by listening to their wishes and problems,the assessment would not have been able to accomplish. And I sincerely would like todedicate this assessment for those women, men and children who have shared portion of their busy schedule to participate without any complaints or compensations.I really hope that this assessment can be a useful piece of document which can be used toidentify further development programs reflected based on the needs and visions of thosemen, women and children who have been ready to participate. Yet, these must be carefullyrethinking before adapting any programs requested.Sreng SopheapAssessment CoordinatorOckenden Cambodia-Ratanakiri Office
 
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About Ratanakiri Province:
Ratanakiri province is located to the Northeast of Cambodia with approximately 588Kmfrom the Capital City Phnom Penh. It is a home of many communities of 9 different ethnicminorities consists of 80% of the total population of 149.997 people, with distinct culture,tradition and languages (Asian Indigenous Peoples Pact Foundation, 2006; GeneralPopulation Census, 2008). It is the remotest and isolated area with majority of thepopulation does not have proper access to institutional support services, poor access to localtransportation and information system as well as other development initiatives. Their solelylivelihoods rely on the traditional subsistence farming of swidden cultivation and on naturalresources such as gathering non-timber forest products, fishing, hunting and practicing theiranimism ritual beliefs. Besides, Ratanakiri is the most fertile land of red volcanic soils withgreat biodiversity of natural resources including mines and gold, which attract quiteintensive investments from the outsiders (Suzuki, 2005).The province has been recently considered as one of the focuses for national economicdevelopment with great emphasis on timber production, agriculture development andtourism (ADB, 2001). To get this forward, the plan for infrastructure development has beenestablished to improve road and highway from Phnom Penh to Ratanakiri and fromVietnam passing thought Ratanakiri to Steung Treng province and Laos. The economicdevelopment of Cambodia for Ratanakiri has quickly opened up the way for investments tothe province for industrial plantation and immigration from lowland areas caused veryserious issue facing the local communities of Ratanakiri with rapid of land losses andnatural resources that they normally collect to support their living (ibid).Lowland Khmers and Khmer from other provinces, many of them came for gold mining andrubber plantation activities, saw economic development as opportunities and encouraged bythe government to migrate to isolated areas or less populated such as Ratanakiri province(General Population Census, 2008). The Asian Indigenous Peoples Pact Foundation (2006)in its Indigenous People and Human Rights report that the migrants who came to Ratanakiriexploring big amount of land, which traditionally used by the ethnic communities, nowgiven away by the government as concessions to individuals and commercial companies forexploitation. These exploitation and conversion of resources lead to environmentaldegradation and the denial of access by local communities to their resources that they havebeen reliance on centuries.During last decade, Ratanakiri has been so much affected by deforestation, illegal logging,land transformation and concession which threatens the people way of living as well as theironly source of survival, which is forest and land, are at risk (Fox, McMahon, Poffenberger,Vogler, 2008). In additional, influential factors such as good soil quality for agriculture,infrastructure improvement and government economic development policy has encouragedinflux of in-migration and establishment of small and large scale industrial plantationsearching for better soil quality farming, investment, forest clearing and land encroachment(ADB, 2001; Bunthavin, 2000). From above factors, forests are being illegal logged orcleared and traditional lands for the subsistence farming are getting smaller and withprevalence of illegal land selling even has continued to threaten the local livelihoods as theyare lesser and even further away from their settlements(John and Irwin, 2005). Besides,such rapidly changes in environmental settings, flood has been frequently identified as amajor hazard (Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, 2009) that could pose a major

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