Water for Life Project Launch, Kampong Speu, Cambodia

Kampong Speu, 14 August 2012 — The Sao Sary Foundation (SSF) has officially launched a clean water project in Kampong Speu, Cambodia. The project is expanded the coverage of SSF’s Water and Sanitation Program that we wish to achieve 50 villages by 2015 if we have sufficient financial support. SSF has begun its mission in this province in 2006 and responding to water and sanitation issues since 2008.

The objective of Water For Life (Kampong Speu) is to provide over 8,400 Cambodian villagers with convenient access to safe drinking water through the installation of 1,400 bio-sand water filters in rural households over three years. The households are located in 10 communes of the Kampong Speu province, about 50km away from Phnom Penh city centre.

The number of people per wells (year-round wells) ranges from 46 to 111, according to the district. Almost half of all people, 48%, obtain drinking water from unsafe sources. The percentage rises during the dry season, to 73% in one district. Just 8% of families have access to water filters, while 44 percent report boiling water before drinking it.

Province-wide the ratio of people to latrines is showing significant rises, from 43.6 per latrine in 2006 to 29.1 in 2008. However, the rates in some districts remain far above the national average: in 5 of the 8 districts the rate is above 30 to 1, and above 80 to 1 in Basedth district.

In addition to the installation of water filters, Water For Life (Kampong Speu) will address other water and sanitation-related concerns in the community, such as: building wells to provide a nearby water source for villagers; installing latrines; and establishing Community Health & Nutrition Centres to help villagers improve their health and their livelihoods.

 “The Sao Sary Foundation is looking forward to the Water For Life (Kampong Speu) partnership with the SIF and Ngee Ann Development Pte Ltd, which will complement our existing programmes in Kampong Speu. This relationship will permit clean disease-free water and sanitation facilities to be extended to thousands of additional villagers in Kampong Speu, Cambodia,” says Mr Vichetr Uon, Founder and Managing Director of Sao Sary Foundation.

The launch event took place in the morning of 14th August at Khtom Krang Commune, Kampong Speu Province and was attended by Singaporean and Cambodian dignitaries, over 150 villagers from the Kampong Speu province and a team of Singapore International Volunteers. The guest-of-honour was Singapore Ambassador to the Kingdom of Cambodia, Mr S Premjith and distinguished guests included H.E Pen Sombo, Deputy Provincial Governor of Kampong Speu Province, SIF Chairman Ms Euleen Goh and SIF Governor Ambassador K Kesavapany.