From 30 June to 1 July 2014, Sophors, Marieke and Kirina from SNV Netherlands Development Organisation organised a field trip to Svay Rieng province. The purpose was to assess the performance of existing water storage and supply systems applied by the cooperating farmers of a previous SNV’s pilot project and to find out potential opportunities for improving supply chain of the tarpaulin and Rovai pump in the targeted communities.

Tarpaulin pond and Rovai pump - © Yim Soksophors
Tarpaulin pond and Rovai pump, Svay Rieng, Cambodia © Yim Soksophors

In the morning, we had a joyful breakfast with Mr. Sok Sotha CFAP managing director to reflect on cooperation between SNV and CFAP. According to Sotha, CFAP is now creating MFI program to provide loans to farmers / clients and at the same time, the purpose of creating this new program is to ensure its long-term sustainability if without funding support from donors. After the meeting, we headed to the targeted village, we met farmers who applied the water storage and supply systems using tarpaulin ponds and Rovai pumps in targeted villages. The farmers told us that they receive better benefit after applying the innovation. The farmers have improved water storage capacity through the preparation of the tarpaulin ponds. At the same time, the Rovai pumps helps them to reduce labour and expense on pumping water from the pond to the vegetable gardens. More water stored in the tarpaulin ponds allows them to increase from two to three cropping cycles in a year.

In the afternoon, we met two management committee members of the wind pump user groups. We discussed challenges, and appropriate solutions to ensure that the wind pumps will be functioning after the project withdrawal. It is to notice that the two wind pumps were installed by SNV’s pilot project for irrigating the dry season rice fields. The farmers see that this innovation is helpful for them because they can reduce by 50% of the total expense on diesel / gasoline for water pumping. However, there are some technical problem and management needed to be strengthened. It is important to have local repairers to fix some small technical problems of the wind pumps (such as change the rope pump, etc.).

After this field visit, some findings were shown as follows:

  • It is potential to support the local farmer associations (FA) in the project’s targeted areas to set up the supply chain of tarpaulin, Rovai pump. According to the meeting with chief of FA management committee, the FA can help to do need assessment and SNV should help to engage tarpaulin and Rovai pump suppliers to the FA.
  • SNV will officially provide the two wind pumps to under the management of the farmer associations. We expect that ownership and commitment of the FA will contribute to ensure long-term use of the wind pumps. Currently, our SNV national consult is working on the strengthening of the wind pump user groups and technical fixing of the wind pump with a service provider CDI.
  • The CSA project will make assignment agreement with different clients, including local farmer associations, commune councils, and other local stakeholders to ensure that roles of those clients / stakeholders are clearly identified.