Mr. Nuon Vuthy has been village chief of Tuol Dambang for almost 20 years. While being chief has its challenges, he is excited about being involved in the development of early warning systems in the area.
Having grown up as a farmer in Beong Pruol commune, and with almost 20 years of experience in his role as Tuol Dambang village leader, Mr. Nuon Vuthy is no stranger to the impact of weather events. “There have been floods and storms every year since the previous generation – I have been living with floods for at least 50 years. Before we had a safe site structure, we would have to go back and forth (returning from the safe area at night to sleep at our houses). We would still have to look after the livestock at the safe site, and that’s also where the sellers were, but we would have to buy petrol for the boat to get there so we ended up spending more than we could earn.”
Life in the agricultural industry, particularly in a flood-prone area, requires significant planning. When weather events like flooding occur, it is important that farmers can take proactive approaches to mitigate the risks to their families, crops and livestock.
To do this, 1294 Early Warning System (known as ‘EWS 1294’) has been implemented under a partnership between the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and People in Need (PIN) Cambodia in Mr. Vuthy’s village. The partnership has also been instrumental in establishing water sensors and buildings on the safe sites, to which Mr. Vuthy said: “Having a building on the safe site cannot help solve everything, but it is an important part of the solution.”
Mr. Vuthy explains why having early warning is so important for his village, “This year we were informed by the system. This is important because every day we have to go by boat to another village to get grass for the cows. We cannot go if it is too windy or during a flood or storm – the alert helps us know whether to go or not and whether we have to find food elsewhere.”
Written by Kelsea Clingeleffer, Results Monitoring and Evaluation Consultant
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