From High Poverty to A Sustainable Livelihood
Uncle Ken Mao is feeding chicken and talking about activities related to growing vegetables and chicken to ODOV staff. He said that he and his wife cultivated vegetables in the garden (20 meters long and 15 meters wide) just north of the house and raised some chickens to support the family. Every day, our family is busy watering vegetables and caring for the garden and chickens.
“My family can earn a daily average sales income from $3.75-$7.50 per day selling vegetables and average $38-$50 per month selling chickens” Uncle Ken Mao explained.
Uncle Ken Mao, 47 years old, and his wife, Aunt Mann Eath, 46, are a farmer couple living in Akreach Village, Prey Chhor Commune, Kampong Trabek District, Prey Veng Province. They are farmers categorized as a poor II household, there are four children in the family (three boys and one girl). The family has only 0.50 acres of rice producing land, and annual yields do not support daily household needs. In order to cover household expenses the family needs to borrow rice and money from outside sources. Due to their poor living conditions, the three sons had to drop out of school and migrate as construction workers to earn extra income.
Uncle Ken Mao was selected to join as a target household in ODOV project “Improve Households Food Security” in August 2016. Through Uncle Ken Mao’s family’s participation in the project they have gained knowledge of sustainable agricultural techniques and received agricultural inputs that enable his family to carry out vegetable gardening and raising chickens for daily consumption and income generation. Through the project and the efforts of Uncle Ken Mao and his family their living conditions have improved.
“I am very very happy that my family has better living conditions than before. My family produces vegetables and chickens for household consumption for the entire year. We also earn extra income daily by selling surplus vegetables and chicken that we produce. We use the extra income to pay for additional school expenses for our daughter. We were also able to repay the agricultural inputs back to the Agricultural Cooperative,” explained Uncle Ken Mao.
Implementation of ODOV’s Improved Household Food Security Project is not only to help improve the living conditions of Uncle Ken Mao and his family but has also increased healthy food availability in the community. Community members can purchase a diversity of foods locally rather than importing from outside.