This migration impacts healthy community development, as able-bodied women and men depart, disrupting and stressing already-struggling families.
World Renew and its local Cambodian partner, OREDA, have initiated various interventions to contribute to solving this development challenge. The story of Mrs. Chreb Ou illustrates the impact of these interventions.
Thirty-one year old Chreb Ou lives in Khvan village, two hours west of Phnom Penh. In the past, Chreb and her family migrated in order to find jobs, working in construction, a garment factory, and on a large plantation. The stress of living far from home and community supports had left her children in poor health and contributed to family stress and even violence. Her children’s medical bills alone used the extra income they learned in migration, leaving them in a cycle of great distress.
In 2013, community leaders selected Chreb’s family to receive a new family pond as part of a World Renew development project in her village. Chreb’s husband had an opportunity to participate in a farmer exchange visit, where he learned about vegetable growing and fish raising. He was inspired by what he saw and learned. Inspired by their opportunities to improve their livelihood on their land, Chreb and her husband decided not to migrate, but to stay in the community. Their life started to change. They started to grow various crops such as long beans, cucumbers, pumpkins, and a species of morning glory, otherwise known as water spinach, common in Southeast Asian cuisine. They also raised fish in their new pond.
The well-being of Chreb’s family has improved. They earn income from selling vegetables and fish. They have reduced their food expenses and the cost of their medical care. There is no violence in the family anymore. Their children are happier. They plan to build a new house in the near future. Chreb knows first-hand the strain migration puts on a family. “I am committed to continue vegetable growing,” she says, “and willing to share my experience with others in the community.”
Prayers for Cambodia
- World Renew will be doing a mid-term review of its Strategic Plan. In Cambodia, our major donor, Mission Alliance, has advised us that they will soon be ending their funding to World Renew and funding local partners directly. With more of our participants migrating to urban areas, there is an increased need to address issues such as safe migration, alcoholism, and debt. We are also helping our farmers to move up the value chain through the creation of producer groups and agricultural co-ops. Please pray for wisdom as we seek to adapt our programs to the rapidly-changing context in Cambodia.
- World Renew will be hosting eight visitors from the USA and Canada on a discovery tour in Cambodia from November 2 to 13. Please pray for the good organization of that tour. Pray that all participants will be richly blessed by what they see, hear, and learn. Pray also that the communities they visit will be blessed by their visit.
- World Renew and Resonate Global Missions (formerly Christian Reformed World Missions) have a strong relationship in Cambodia. We have worked together on many initiatives. This year we are taking that partnership to a new level with increased involvement of Resonate Global
- Missions in World Renew’s work with churches, and increased support from Resonate Global Missions to support our staff in strengthening their Christian faith. Please pray for our partnership to continue to grow and to be fruitful.
World Renew Cambodia
Story written by Sokly Sorn, Partner staff, translated by Kao Sok, World Renew staff