From 2-5 July 2011, with funding support provided by the European Union (EU), a CEDAC’s project called “Improving Food Security for Women and Rural Poor in Mondulkiri/IFWP-MP” organized a four-day exposure visit for 58 farmers (20 women), including 44 farmers (18 women), 14 project staff, to visit other CEDAC’s target provinces in Kampong Speu and Kampot Provinces.

The purposes of the visit were to: (1) learn from experienced farmers on management and leadership of the Village based Farmer Organization, rice bank establishment process in Kong Pisey district, Kampong Speu province and Dong Tong district, Kampot Province, and (2) discover agricultural innovations and practical experience in producing chick, and preparation of Multi-Purpose Farm (MPF) in Samrong and Tramkak districts, Takeo province.

Farmers visited different learning sites as follows:

  • Mr. Oun Sophal, chief of Ratanak Samaky Development Association presented the historical background of this association as well as his successful experience in managing the association. It is important to notice that this association was established on 30 December 2005 with 6 members. Up to now, the association has 197 members (123 women) with the total capital of 20,300,000 riels (approximately 5,075 USD) and now playing very important role in agriculture and rural development activities in the village.
  • Farmers also visited a farmer association in Cheu Lom Village, Moha Resey Commune, Kong Pisey District, Kampong Speu Province. This farmer association had only 37 members (19 women) at the beginning (15 June 2006). Up to now, the association has 176 members (26 women) with the total capital of 77,366,000 riels (approximately19,341 USD). Many farmer groups have been established under the affiliation of this association, including chicken farmer producer group, organic rice producer group, youth group, women’s group, collective selling and buying group, community shop, saving group, etc.
  • Then, the farmer visited the agricultural practices of Ecological Chicken Raising in Pich Entrea Village, Boeung Tragn Khang Chheung Commune, Somrong District, Takeo Province, and visited a Multi-Purpose Farm prepared by Ruos Mao, which farmers visited natural fish trapping, fish raising, ecological System of Rice Intensification, vegetable growing, earthworm raising, and rice seed purification in the farm.

According to farmers’ impression, they were not only surprised to learn innovations from the successful farmers, but also have gained more confidence and technical skills in relation to the agricultural practices of chicken raising, village-based farmer association, multi-purpose farm etc. Farmers were very active to raise questions during the visit and most of them promised to apply what they have learned at their homes.