A new perspective through organic farming

The indigenous Bunong community in Mondulkiri is affected by land-grabbing through international rubber companies. The loss of their land spreads hopelessness and causes social problems. In organic farming the indigenous people find an alternative way to secure their livelihood as well as hope for the future of their community.

A new perspective through organic farming

Our local project partner BIPA (Bunong Indigenous People Association) promotes organic farming among the indigenous Bunong community in Mondulkiri, Cambodia. In organic farming, the smallholder farmers affected by land-grabbing find a new perspective.

The indigenous Bunong community in Mondulkiri is affected by land-grabbing through international rubber companies. The loss of their land spreads hopelessness and causes social problems. In organic farming the indigenous people find an alternative way to secure their livelihood as well as hope for the future of their community.

Our partner organisation BIPA provides the farmers with technical know-how in organic farming. BIPA advises them on producing and on marketing of cash crops such as pepper, sacha inchi (Inca peanut) and coffee, as well as on producing compost and organic pesticide. They learn how to successfully cultivate the little land that remains to them and are strengthened in their independence from expensive chemical products. In Bousra, BIPA set up a demonstration farm where seedlings are produced and new cultivation methods are investigated. BIPA’s employees are all Bunong. Their work strengthens the community and creates a new future perspective for the farming families.

Neth Prak

Executive Director BIPA, Kambodscha

„As a grassroots civil society organization created by the Bunong themselves, we have the mission to strengthen the self-help capacity of the Bunong people to solve the pressing land conflicts, enhance the sustainability of their livelihoods and to improve access to education for the Bunong youth. It is one of our strengths that our team, consisting of Bunong people, shares the everyday life of affected communities. That is why we gain knowledge of their needs and together with them we find ways to support them best.”

Education and a Better Future for Children in Need

In the region around Kampong Cham apprenticeships are urgently needed. BSDA (Buddhism for Social Development Action) runs its own social enterprises and provides apprenticeships in the fields of mechanics, electronics, tourism, gastronomy and beauty care.

Education and a Better Future for Children in Need

Our partner organisation BSDA works in Kampong Cham with children and youths from extremely poor and broken families. The various educational programmes offer young people opportunities and positive prospects for their future.

In the region around Kampong Cham apprenticeships are urgently needed. BSDA (Buddhism for Social Development Action) runs its own social enterprises and provides apprenticeships in the fields of mechanics, electronics, tourism, gastronomy and beauty care.

In the “Smile Institute” live around 100 vulnerable children and youths. 11 of them are affected by HIV/AIDS affected and attend the nearby primary and secondary school. The others do not have sufficient primary education and have dropped out of school because they grew up in extremely poor and broken families. Around half of them are girls. In the first six months they attend the “preperatory school”, where they catch up on basic education. Subsequently, they complete an apprenticeship during one year.

The “Smile Restaurant” is such a social enterprise that serves as a training workplace for future cooks and service employees. Since this concept has proved its worth, the “Hanchey Bamboo Resort” was opened in 2018, an ecological retreat centre for local and international guests. Young people can complete an apprenticeship in gastronomy and hotel business here. The construction followed ecological and social standards and promoted directly the development of the surrounding villages. The “Hanchey Bamboo Resort” is ecologically and socially sustainable. The BSDA educational programmes are co-financed by the income from the social enterprises.

Particularly poor families receive scholarships so that their children can attend school. In two drop-in centres, the organisation offers tutoring and leisure activities. The dance and music courses are very successful and contribute significantly to strengthening the children’s self-confidence. English and Chinese courses are also offered at a local school and pre-school children are looked after in two kindergartens.

Vandong Thorn

Director BSDA, Kambodscha

“BSDA has been successful at developing strong and positive relationships with the communities where we work. Our mission is to work together to empower vulnerable people, promote compassionate engagement and enhance the quality of life, especially for women, children and youth, through education, health and livelihood development initiatives.”