Wednesday, July 31, 2013

UNICEF supports Cambodian commune councils to provide birth certificates

Ms. Yam Seath with her three children at their house in Por Pi village, Prey Veng
©UNICEF Cambodia2013/Rin Ream
 PREY VENG, Cambodia, 15 May 2013 – Seven year old Srey Mao wants to become a doctor and her five year old brother, Sam Nang, wants to be a teacher. With their baby brother, Sranoh, they live with their mother, 37 year old Yam Seath, in a small bamboo house in Por Pi village, Done Keung commune, about 40 km from the provincial town of Prey Veng. They returned to the village after their father abandoned the family in 2012 following a failed relocation to another province. Though their mother cannot read or write she has big ambitions for her children.

Combatting malnutrition with hospital treatment and take-home therapeutic food

18-month-old Saroeurn Kunthea (in the arms of her grandmother Som Chanthy)
recovered from severe acute malnutrition following the full treatment regimen.
©UNICEF Cambodia/2013/Pericles Carvalho
Combatting malnutrition with hospital treatment and take-home therapeutic food
Getting children back on track for healthy development

SVAY RIENG, Cambodia, 22 July 2013 – Eighteen-month-old Saroeurn Kunthea who lives in Trok village, south-east Cambodia is fortunate to be alive. At nine months of age, weighing only 4 kilograms, her grandmother, Puth Sopheap, sought urgent help at Svay Rieng Referral Hospital. “She was in very bad condition” says paediatric nurse Mrs. Som Chanthy who saw Kunthea when she was admitted. “She was lethargic, her eyes were sunken, she had a fever, a swollen abdomen and diarrhoea.” Measured, weighed and examined, Kunthea was diagnosed with severe acute malnutrition. Like 76 per cent of children under the age of 2 in Cambodia, Kunthea’s condition was the result of an inadequate diet. Though her mother breastfed her before and after going to work at a garment factory in town, her only solid food each day was watery rice.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Making a difference in Cambodia as a community preschool teacher and peer mentor

In Angkor Chea village, community preschool teacher Mr. Son Lonh reads a story to a packed class of 22 pupils aged between 3 and 6.
©UNICEF Cambodia/2013/Charmaine Gaa
In the village of Angkor Chea, 45 kilometers from the town of Prey Veng in south-eastern Cambodia, 22 children aged between 3 and 6 are sitting tightly on benches under a makeshift tent. All eyes are on the teacher’s picture-filled storybook. Storytelling or picture-reading is part of the daily routine at the community preschool (CPS). It is an activity which older children from the nearby primary school also stop by to enjoy.

Peer support in Cambodia helps HIV-infected teens transition to adulthood

At Takeo provincial hospital, nurse Ken Nim leads 16 young people (10 girls and six boys) through the agenda of their meeting of ‘Mondul Mith Chouy Mith’ (known as ‘mmm’).
©UNICEF Cambodia/2013/Shepherd-Johnson
Chantrea, Bopha, Vichet and Syha are four friends aged between 14 and 20 who live in Takeo province in southern Cambodia. They meet monthly to socialize and exchange news, discuss good nutrition and how to stay healthy. They are all HIV positive. On the last Thursday of every month they get together with other young people as part of the peer support group Mondul Mith Chouy Mith (friends helping friends), known as ‘mmm’.

The connection between malnutrition and HIV infection in Cambodia – UNICEF Cambodia

Making the connections and saving lives
The link between malnutrition and HIV infection in Cambodia
11-year-old Youen, cared for by his 80-year-old grandmother, was admitted to hospital in 2012 with severe acute malnutrition.
©UNICEF Cambodia/2013/Shepherd-Johnson
In 2011, Cambodia introduced National Paediatric AIDS Care guidelines to incorporate HIV testing for all children hospitalized with severe acute malnutrition whose HIV status was unknown. Today in Kampong Speu province, 11-year-old Youen is alive and healthy thanks to the connection made between these two conditions.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Fulfilling the demand for safe drinking water in rural arsenic-affected areas

Houg Socheat with his grandmother Houv Kim Chroeu.
© UNICEF Cambodia/2013/Reid
Just 80 metres from the Tunle Touch River in Preak Changkran village, the continuous noise of running water can be heard coming from a bright blue building, positioned between a primary school and a pagoda in Prey Veng province.  This building, centrally located in the village, is the new solar-powered community water treatment and bottling system, that purifies water from the nearby Tunle Touch river, seals the safe drinking water into 10 and 20-litre bottles and distributes them to households and schools in Preak Changkran commune.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Providing vital support to women and children at the local level

Khun Phorn, commune women and children focal point for Ta Sda commune.
© UNICEF Cambodia/2013/Reid

At the start of another busy day, 60 year-old Khun Phorn, women and children focal point for Ta Sda commune in Battambang province, north-western Cambodia, consults her year planner, to review her tasks and jot down a few reminder notes. The year planner is more than a diary. Produced and distributed annually by UNICEF and the Ministry of Interior, it contains invaluable information on civic registration, health, nutrition, water sanitation and hygiene, child protection, emergency preparedness and education.  During her outreach sessions with residents in the commune Phorn uses her year planner to share knowledge on each of these issues and promote the benefits of social services including birth registration and pre-school education.