Monday, April 27, 2009

Meeting with Dr. Craig A Meisner and Dr. John M.Schiller

On 27 April, 2009 Mr. Yim Sok Sophors met and discussed with Dr. Craig A Meisner (Research and Extension Manager) from Australian Center for International Agricultural Research and Dr. John M.Schiller (Honorary Consultant) from the University of Queenland at the office of CEDAC in Phnom Penh.

The discussion focused on the CARF-7 call for proposal. During the meeting, Dr. Craig A Meisner and Dr. John M.Schiller presented and explained about the guideline of the CARF-7 call for proposal especially the objectives of the research proposal are needed to be unique which is no one have conducted it previously, the proposed research proposal should include various members from different institutions to be the team members of the whole research team and finally, there should be a good mean of widely dissemination of research finding at the end of the project.

As a result of the meeting, we have shared and learned well about this call for proposal and we do hope that we can apply for this call successfully.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

CEDAC General Assembly

April 10, 2009 CEDAC organized it general assembly with the participation of all CEDAC staff from the different main components such as CEDAC-Field program (FP), CEDAC Institute for Local Development (CILD), Research development and Consulting service, environment and health (RDC), publication unit, CEDAC Enterprise for Social Development (CESDE). Approximately, 250 staff had participated in the assembly.

The agenda of the assembly was mainly focused on sharing of each component's achievement during the first quarter of this year (2009) especially to compare of what has been doing by each component which is contributed to the achievement of overall goal and mission of CEDAC in general. It is to note that CEDAC-Field Program has got direct funding support from EC for implementing a development project in Mondulkiri province. It is the first project that CEDAC gets direct fund support from EC.

Particularly, during the meeting, Dr. Yang Saing Koma provided several questions for participant to take into account. Those questions were raised to the participants in order to consider about what kind of society that they prefer to live especially they prefer for their children to live in? Are they currently working to contribute to the accomplishment of their expectation?
In response to this question, Mr. Prak Sereyvath who is the senior program adviser of CEDAC had shared his knowledge based on his visit to France. He had shared about the restaurant that sell organic food for students at schools. He expected that his children will be able to eat organic good in Cambodia too. Organic good is very necessary important to ensure a good health of students that is strongly effected to the human health of the whole society in the coming future, he added. Moreover, Mr. Phin Sopheap who is the member of advisory board of CEDAC had shared that there are 5 capitals (human capital, social capital, financial capital, physical capital, and natural capital), but the most important among them is human capital and he emphasized on health. If we have a good health and education, the other capitals will be achieved automatically afterward, he said.

Furthermore, at the afternoon of that day, the financial regulation was also raised for plenary presentation and discussion during the assembly. It was picked for discussion in order to strengthen the quality of financial management of CEDAC to become an international standard. Relating to the progress of work, it is to note that the participants also had opportunity to discuss and share what they have achieved during the first quarter of this year to each other so that they could learn and understand each other in term of their successful works and what need to be improved for the next quarter.

At the evening of the meeting day, CEDAC organized a party with the staff in order to celebrate the fruitful result of the meeting and especially to celebrate for Khmer New year that is coming soon after the meeting. Please new year brings to all CEDAC staff and all people with new success and happiness in life, especially your role and contribution to the community development.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Meeting with ECHO and FORESTA

On April 03, 2009 there was a meeting with Mr. Rick Burnette, Regional Director for ECHO Asia and Mr. Bob Morikawa, director of Foresta from Thailand. The meeting was taken place in CEDAC Office in Phnom Penh from 11:00 AM to 12:00 AM and then from 1:00PM to 2:30PM. The purpose of the visitors is to seek for more understanding about CEDAC's work in Cambodia and to cooperate with each other in term of agriculture and rural development.

During the meeting, Mr. YIM Sok Sophors presented about CEDAC work included the six main components of CEDAC and then more detail on CEDAC Field Program. At the afternoon, there was a in-depth interview and discussion on the topic of SRI extension in Cambodia. The historical background of SRI extension in Cambodia was raised to present as well as the strategy and methodology to widespread SRI throughout the country. It is to note that SRI is now the national program of Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF).

As the result, Mr. Rick Burnette would like to organize a study tour from Thailand to visit CEDAC in Cambodia in order to learn more detail about CEDAC's experiences and he also would like to cooperate with CEDAC to produce EAN newsletter in Khmer translation. Now, the process is being progressed.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Staff capacity building by Dr. Yang Saing Koma

02-03 April 2009, 14 staff of CEDAC Field Program have attended the training support which is trained by Dr. Yang Saing Koma, the president of CEDAC. Such training is conducted regularly every 3 months with direct support from the president of CEDAC.

The purpose of the training is to provide capacity building the core staff of CEDAC field program in term of self development and the updated development approach of CEDAC.

Relating to the activities of during the training, first of all, each participants have shared to each other the general information relating to the work and achievement. Later on the small group discussion which consisted of 3-4 participants was conducted in order to share the successful things and unsuccessful things that each one have done during the first quarter of this year, furthermore the participants have also discussed about the improving points and main expectation for the next quarter, April to June 2009.

After presenting the impression of group representatives relating to their small group discussion, some key words were found out like: Team Learning, Learning Network, Learning Facilitators, Leading to ask questions, etc. All participants have learned to development questions for empowering the others.

To me, I noted that the methodology used during the training was followed to the adult learning approach that allowed most of the participants actively participated in the whole training session. Especially, it was a good time for all participants to exchange their knowledge and practical experience (Best Practices) in the field. The training enabled me to review on what I have learned, for example the concept of learning organization and other main key words as mentioned-above. Additionally, it stimulated me to consider about what should i do specifically after the training.

There are some Best Practices that we need to capitalize:
  1. Staff management and team work
  2. Staff capacity building
  3. Capacity building for farmer leaders at the communities
  4. How to formulate the farmer group, village based farmer association and network
  5. Reporting skill
  6. Database management
  7. Budget and financial management
  8. Cooperation with local authorities and stakeholders
  9. Project Monitoring and Evaluation
  10. Cases-studied
  11. How to arrange and organize a good workshop
  12. Self Development
  13. Capacity building to next generation to become a good leader/manager

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Core Team of Field Program Meeting

01 April 2009, the core team meeting of field program was held with the participation of 12 participants, included Mr. Sim Samoeun, Mr. Yi Kimthan, Mr. Bao Vuthy, Mr. Yim Bunlong, Miss. Pheng Chandy, Mrs. Mok Chenda, Miss. Luy Theary, Mr. Lang Chanthea, Mr. Seng Sopheak, Mr. Pel Chivita, Mr. Hour Sreng, Mr. Y Kadum and Mr. Yim Sok Sophors. Those participants are the program director, program officers, project coordinators and project officers.

Main agenda of the meeting was pointed out as follows:
  1. To share information relating to the progress of the project from each participant
  2. To draw up the logo of CEDAC-Field Program
  3. To determine the salary of the project staff from donors
  4. To provide information and select authorized staff for the supervision of commune project
  5. To improve the internal financial regulation of CEDAC-Field Program
First of all, the participants have shared to each other about the general information that they have learned from the field and other relevant information relating to Agriculture and Rural Development. Based the sharing information from the staff of PRS-EU project, it is to note that the association of young community leaders are working well in term of providing development assistance services to the local authorities and other local stakeholders. Each association can make gross income approximately of 1000 US$/month. It is good to hear that those YCL associations are able to get self-financed. However, those YCL associations need to find more work in order to sustain their associations effectively.

Moreover, the participants had also discussed about the supervision of commune project and also debated about the improved financial policy of the program. Mr. Kin Mengse who is the senior program officer of CEDAC-Field Program interested to be responsible for managing the commune projects which are direct operated by Mr. Say Tith. Later on, the financial regulation was picked up for improvement in order to ensure that process of financial management is enhanced. In short, the meeting enabled to all participants are clear enought about management of the whole program.