28 October 2011, a core team meeting was organized with the participation of all project officers, project coordinators, M&E Officers, program officers and program assistant. It is important to notice that CEDAC’s Field Program is now implementing 27 development projects. The projects mainly involve in food security, local governance, women empowerment, community-led saving, linking farmers to market, farmer groups/ farmer associations and network, natural resource conservation and management etc.

Under the facilitation by Mr. Meas Somica, the participants shared the project progress as well as the affected situation of the current flood to farmers’ livelihood and farming activities. In the mean time, they also raised some possible solutions to be implemented after the flood. For instance, the participants think that it is good if farmers can re-plant rice, plant vegetables, raise chicken, conduct fish culture, select good rice seed for cultivating in the next season etc.

We really don’t focus on the emergency relief at this time, but we will support farmers to conduct appropriate farming activities after the flood. More importantly, we will link emergency relief with the long term development activities. For instance, we provide farmers some rice seedlings but farmers need to conduct SRI cultivation which is followed to the principles of the ecological System of Rice Intensification (SRI). Farmers also can get some vegetable seeds but they need to plant vegetables for consumption and also demonstrate their good practices to the other farmers.

A part of the meeting, Mr. Rasika, a Srilanka Volunteer through the South and South Exchange Program, funded by FK presented Home Gardening Technique in Srilanka. It was very interesting to see the appropriate techniques that can be applied in a limited land. Home gardening is also possible in the small land or even no land for growing vegetables. Mr. Rasika also mentioned that the climate condition in Srilanka and Cambodia is similar so the techniques can be applied here, in Cambodia. All the techniques shared by Mr. Rasika are able to be implemented in both, rainy and dry seasons. In the dry season, some techniques are good as they can save much water for watering the crop. However, vegetable growers need to have some basic knowledge of vegetables. Mr Rasika pledged to present another technique relating to Seed Selection and Seed Purification next monthly meeting.

At the end of the meeting, the participants discussed cooperation across the projects in CEDAC’s Field Program. It is good to notice that Mr. Chhin Chhunhoir, project M&E officer, will spend his time to conduct the end project evaluation for CHES project in Pursat province in November 2011. On the other hand, Miss Pheng Chandy Program Assistant and Mr. Hour Sreng Project Coordinator based in Kampong Cham province will participate in the training on Food Security that will be organized by CARD (Council for Agriculture and Rural Development), Mr Y Kadum will join the NGO Forum on Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction Management etc. The participants also proposed date for the training on Climate Change Adaptation that will be trained by Dr. Yang Saing Koma on 17-18 November 2011.

According to the meeting, it was good to hear the progress of each project of CEDAC’s Field Program as well as discussion on the affected situation and solution after the flood. More importantly, the presentation on Home Gardening was really interested as some techniques are appropriate to apply in the Cambodia’s climate condition.