Cambodian Rural Development Team

Vision: "A Cambodia free of poverty and environmental degradation." Mission: "To improve food security, incomes, and living standards of subsistence rural communities in support of environmental conservation throughout Cambodia."
Jan 9, 2015

Bio-digester repair for 8 households in Koh Preah

Meeting to identify problems of the bio-digesters
Meeting to identify problems of the bio-digesters

With a good news that bio-gas lamps are now available for buying, CRDT staff rushed to Koh Preah village on Dec 13th and collected information about the bio-digesters that need repair. In the whole Koh Preah village, only 8 households have bio-digesters. Our team first met with the 8 families’ representatives to get to know their current problems with bio-digesters as well as to assess if they are still interested in using them. Then, we went to each house to check and identify problems for repair work.

Among the 8 systems, only one was still functioning well. The other systems were broken; all lamps are broken, most of the stoves were rusty from not being used and lack of maintenance; 2 systems had problems with tubes. However, the major problem was the incorrect usage and the poor maintenance of the systems. The households somehow didn't follow the instruction when putting manure into digesters, or they put too much water in digesters thereby producing a very low flam gas. However, all of them wanted to continue to use their bio-digesters and they have been anxious for repair and replacement of the broken systems for long.

Ms. Rom, a 32-year old single lady who lives with her mother and whose bio-digester is still functioning said that “the bio-digester helps reduce my hardship a lot. Since I started using it in 2012, I didn’t have to collect firewood for cooking ever again. Moreover, the waste from the bio-digester becomes a very good fertilizer for my rice field and crops. Unfortunately, my lamp was broken a few months ago and I have been searching for assistance to repair it. I am glad that CRDT came to fix this problem for me”.

In the next few months, CRDT will collect the contribution from the households, then buy materials and start the repair work in February. At the same time, we will provide coaching on the use and maintenance of bio-digester to the 8 families. The total cost of the materials for repair is 502$. The households will contribute 200$ and the rest will be supported by donation from Global Giving. So far, our project raised 2,700 USD. We still need 7,300 USD to fund this project and we hope for your next donation in the future.

Thanks so much for your kind help to the people in Koh Preah! We wish you a Happy and Successful New Year 2015!

Identifying problems of bio-digester in each house
Identifying problems of bio-digester in each house
Mr. Sokheng showing his new stove he will install
Mr. Sokheng showing his new stove he will install
Mr. Rom using bio-gas to cook in her kitchen
Mr. Rom using bio-gas to cook in her kitchen
Ms. Rom showing her broken lamp
Ms. Rom showing her broken lamp
Ms. Rom in front of her homestay house
Ms. Rom in front of her homestay house

Links:

Oct 14, 2014

Chicken and Pig Raising Adapted to Climate Change

Training on Chicken and Pig Raising
Training on Chicken and Pig Raising

This quarter has been a tiring but exciting period for us. It has been tiring searching for materials (lamps) to repair the bio-digester systems of our beneficiaries but we ended up with nothing to buy due to the unavailability of such lamps on the Cambodian market and decided to postpone the repair until March next year. Alternatively, the project team organized a training course on “Chicken and Pig Raising Adapted to Climate Change” for our beneficiaries in Koh Preah village on 2nd September 2014. This training was conducted to respond to the community need assessed in previous reporting period about the problem of livestock death due to the changing climate.

In Koh Preah village where our Global Giving project site is, the training course was aimed to improve the capacities of farmers in raising chicken and pig within the context of climate change. Twenty two participants (14 women) attended this training. The topics for chicken raising focused on selection of hence and cock for breeding, choosing location for building chicken house, building chicken house, taking care of chicken, chicken vaccination, making organic feed for chicken. The topics of pig raising focused on selection of piglets for breeding, choosing location for building pig house, building pig house, providing pig feed and taking care of pig, and pig vaccination. According to our evaluation, 15 participants have clear understanding and 7 participants have medium understanding of the topics.

Mrs. Vannara, a woman farmer in Koh Preah confronted with livestock death, as we mentioned in a previous report also attended this training. After the training, she felt more confident to continue her livestock raising. She was very interested in the topics of natural vaccine and feed making for chicken and pig. She said “I will start raising chicken and pig again as soon as I can allocate some budget to buy piglets. However, I will not raise them on a large scale yet because I would like to practice the new techniques I learned first and also to avoid a big loss like in the past.”

Up to this quarter, our fund raised from GlobalGiving donors totals USD 1,680.71 but after the implementation of activities, only USD 560 remain. In the next six months we will need to buy materials to repair bio-digesters. On October 15th, donations to our project on GG will be matched at 30%. We would be so grateful if you could donate to us on that day. The matching begins on

October 15th from 9 am to 11:59 pm (time in New York)

or October 15th from 3 pm to October 16th at 6: 00 am (time in Europe)

or October 15th from 8 pm to October 16th at 11 am (time in Cambodia)

Thank you to all our generous donors for your ongoing support. Please remain with us and witness the changes brought by your contribution in our rural subsistence farmers in Cambodia.

Mrs. Vannara and her remaining chickens
Mrs. Vannara and her remaining chickens
Stove and pot for cooking pig feed
Stove and pot for cooking pig feed
Rice crop after transplanting for two weeks
Rice crop after transplanting for two weeks
Village road in Koh Preah
Village road in Koh Preah

Links:

Jul 16, 2014

Repairing Bio-digesters for Farmers in Koh Preah

Broken tube of Ms. Vibol
Broken tube of Ms. Vibol's bio-digester

This time of the year and with the arrival of the rainy season, most of our beneficiaries in Koh Preah commune have been busy with their rice farming. Thus, during our 3- day trip (2 to 4 July) to assess the needs for repairing bio-digesters, we have noticed that some villages were rather quieter than usual. Meeting with our CBO members who have bio-digesters, we found that 42 out of the 55 households are having problems with the spare parts of the systems. Some have problems with cookers while others have problems with lamps. Five of them have not been able to use their bio-digesters for almost two years due to two problems: (1) the broken parts of the system such as tube, lamps, tab, and cookers which are not available in Cambodia and (2): the lack of animal manure to produce bio-gas when their livestock kept dying especially during hot season.

With bio-digester, Ms. Vibol had been living very conveniently for 8 months before its spare parts were broken, because she did not need to go to the forest to collect fuel wood for daily cooking and boiling water. The tube connected from the bio-digester to the cooker was broken because of storms and heavy rain. Her cooker is rusty and cannot function because it has not been used for almost two years. The lamp using bio-gas for lighting her home does not work. She has asked CRDT to repair these spare parts, which are not available in her community.

Ms. Vannara reported that her chickens and ducks kept dying in hot season during March and April. At the beginning, she raised 50 chickens and 15 ducks. Four months later, her livestock grew bigger and almost ready for sale. Unfortunately, 35 chickens died during 7 days and all ducks died in a day. She felt very hopeless and decided to postpone raising chickens and ducks since then. She would like CRDT to help provide new techniques for raising livestock that adapts to climate change, especially to protect her chickens and ducks during the season when diseases breakout.

In response to the first problem, with fund raised from GlobalGiving donors, CRDT has planned in late August 2014 to help these families by replacing the broken spare parts and involving them in the repairing process, so that later they will be able to repair the bio-digester themselves as well as help other villagers to repair theirs. The cost of the new spare parts were agreed among the villagers that half will be covered by the fund from Global Giving and the other half will be settled by the families themselves.

To address the challenge in raising livestock as well as the lack of animal manure for producing bio-gas, we have planned to provide them with trainings on livestock raising and disease preventive methods adapted to climate change. Families which do animal raising are confronted by the continuous death of their livestock due to the fact that climate change becomes noticeable in their localities causing animals being prone to diseases. If a pig dies, it is a big loss for the family. To avoid such loss, some villagers decided to reduce or stop raising such animals as pigs, chickens, and ducks.

We estimated a needed budget of around USD 4,340 (USD 840 for half of the cost for bio-digesters repair plus USD 3,500 to provide trainings on livestock raising for 319 families). The fund of USD 1,500 raised over the last semester would be used to address the problem of bio-digesters first. Your recurring donation is really necessary and your support could have even more impact if you decide to donate to CRDT on Global Giving matching day on July 16th from 9 am to 11:59 pm (time in New York) or July 16th from 3 pm to July 17th at 6: 00 am (time in Europe). Your donation will be matched at 50% which will tremendously help CRDT and this project.

CRDT would like to take this opportunity to thank Charissa, GlobalGiving volunteer, for visiting our project last May and giving a lot of helpful suggestions.

Finally, thank you to all donors for your kindness to our Cambodian rural families.

Burned tube of Ms. Nea
Burned tube of Ms. Nea
Rusty cooker of Ms. Khamphang
Rusty cooker of Ms. Khamphang
Unfunctioning lamp of Ms. Vibol
Unfunctioning lamp of Ms. Vibol
Chickens of Ms. Channy left from death in April
Chickens of Ms. Channy left from death in April
Pig of Ms. Nea after 5 months raising
Pig of Ms. Nea after 5 months raising

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