Farmer Community Leader Summit
On July 17, 2013, in cooperation with the Farmer and Nature Net (FNN), CEDAC organized a summit for farmer leaders in Shihanouk province. There were 45 participants, including 6 women representing community leaders from 35 villages, 23 communes, 11 districts in Kampong Cham, Svay Reang, Kampot, Takeo and Prey Veng. The summit was facilitated by CEDAC President, Dr. Yang Saing Koma and Mr. Tath Sok, CEDAC program coordinator. The objectives of the summit were to:
- Create a clear vision for building self-reliant communities in 2022 (S22)Draft by-laws for S22, focusing on national saving community confederation
- Strengthen mutual cooperation and solidarity amongst farmer leaders
During the summit, presentations were delivered on topics including: the experiences of the strongest community savings groups, progress on the RMC initiative, the five-year strategic plan (2013-208) for the savings associations, and the support fund.
In opening, Dr. Koma thanked farmer leaders for covering their own expenses during the summit and stressed that this is one of our progress. He added that farmers need to continue working to secure self-reliance for our farming communities in the future.
To date, CEDAC has supported 3,000 CEDAC- savings associations with 70,074 members in 1,960 villages, 320 communes, 76 districts of 17 provinces. The total saving capital of these groups is over 13 million USD.
During his remarks, FNN President Mr. Uon Sophal acknowledged that “through these farmer-led savings programs, we are promoting mutual cooperation and better relations among rice farmers in local communities as well as with local authorities. Moreover, our rice farmers have improved not only production skills, but also skills related to management and critical thinking, especially on how to set up their own vision and strategic plans.”
Through this summit, farmer leaders gained a better understanding of progress and best practices of savings community in each province, the five year strategic plan of saving community federation, progress on the RMC initiative. Furthermore, participants strengthened their relationships and solidarity. They expressed their commitment to working together to accomplish the goals outlined by the S22 plan.