ODOV is a local Cambodian NGO, which has an office located in Mesang Town, Prey Veng Province, less than one kilometer from the Mesang Market.
ODOV initially began as the Mesang Integrated Community Development Program, a project of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), before becoming localized in 2004. In April 2005, ODOV was recognized and registered with Cambodia’s Ministry of Interior. ODOV became one of only a handful of Cambodian NGOs to receive recognition from the Cooperation Committee for Cambodia (CCC) through its rigorous voluntary certification program for NGO Good Governance and Professional Practice.
ODOV has been receiving grants from MCC more than ten years to implement Integrated Community Development projects to enhance food security, nutritional status and income for disadvantaged communities. Receiving a grant from USAIDs through Pact Cambodia to implement a four year project called ‘’ Local Administration and Reform” to promote decentralization and de-concentration as well as improvement of local governance at the sub-national level; ODOV received a three year grant from the European Commission (EC) through Helen Keller International Cambodia to implement a homestead food production; ODOV also received a three year grant from International Development Research Centre (IDRC) through Helen Keller International, Cambodia to implement a research project called ‘’Integrated Small Aquaculture with Homestead Food Production” in cooperation with University of British Columbia (UBC), Fishery Administration of Cambodia and World Fish Center. Also, ODOV has received a one year grant from Forum Syd to implement a climate change project to address hazard climate change to reduce venerability of communities. ODOV currently receives funding from World Renew and Helen Keller International to implement food security and nutrition projects. ODOV maintains a good relationship with different applicable ministries from the Cambodian government as well as local authority and regularly networks with the government to increase knowledge and opportunities.
Since it was established, ODOV has successfully created 72 Village Banks (saving groups), each self-sustaining and composed of at least 50 farmers. Each village bank is managed by a leadership committee of 5 members (average of 2-3 women) who are trained in financial management, team building, and problem solving. ODOV has set up community support systems dedicated to targeting poor households by establishing Village Model Farms (VMFs). VMFs successfully improve food security, nutrition, and health because they give full ownership to the community. The model farms serve as a demonstration site, a centre for practical training for community’s members, a source of agricultural inputs, and technical information. ODOV has trained over 9,000 farmers in family nutrition, food preparation, and sustainable agriculture techniques including year-round vegetable production, rice cultivation, compost-making, and fish and animal raising; improved the capacity of hundreds of commune councils to respond to local citizens’ needs; provided support for over 3,000 high school students to learn valuable vocational skills; and established five Agriculture Cooperatives that improve farmers’ access to agricultural inputs and local markets.
The majority of ODOV staff has graduated from university with diverse educational backgrounds. Staff has extensive training in climate change, sustainable agriculture, and community nutrition from previous partners such as Helen Keller International, World Renew, Forum Syd, and Cord Cambodia. Years of training and experience implementing sustainable food security, community finance and income generation, homestead food production, local governance, community nutrition, and climate change projects have given ODOV’s technical staff adequate knowledge of community mobilization, finance management, business principles, family nutrition, proper food preparation and sustainable agriculture technologies, including those adapted to climate change, such as: water management (drip irrigation; bed preparation and mulching; expanding fish ponds to improve rain water collecting; and food production), crop diversification (year-round vegetable production), and soil management (crop rotation, inter-cropping, compost making, and natural fertilizers), poultry production, and fish cultivation.
ODOV has set up an accounting system using the program QuickBooks and Excel, and has a clear financial management policy for internal operations. Additionally, ODOV has developed a financial management and record keeping processes, as well as a training manual, for village banks and agriculture cooperatives. ODOV ensures that staff in the financial department is properly trained and have an educational background in financial processes. ODOV also has training in good governance and stresses the importance of transparency and accountability in the village bank committee and cooperatives trainings.
ODOV is governed by a Board of Directors, comprised of 7 Cambodians all working as leaders in the development sector. The board provides direction and guidance for the organization in accordance with ODOV’s vision and mission. Additionally, organizational strategy is regularly assessed through an internal Management Committee. ODOV’s Executive Director, Mr. Tes Sopheat, is accountable to the Board of Directors.