The COVID-19 pandemic created a crisis for communities around the world. In tourist hubs and border towns of Cambodia and Thailand, families were particularly hard hit, struggling to survive amid travel restrictions and economic downturns. To address this crisis, ADB tapped local-based civil society organization Mith Samlanh to implement a project which provided support and assistance to these communities.

Through this project, communities were provided with COVID-19 information and resources, social protection and emergency support, and assistance for those who lost their livelihoods.

Transcript

Tourist hubs and borders have always been bustling centers of commerce and trade.

Without tourists coming in and the borders closing, many of them lost their income and were not able to pay rent or buy food for their families.  

Lerng Chanlim, Local resident of Poipet:
 
During the COVID-19 lockdown, the biggest problem in our community was a lack of food.

We lost our daily source of income. We received help from Mith Samlanh and its partner, Peuan Peuan who provided us with emergency support such as food and rent and helped us access health services and vaccines. 

The Asian Development Bank contracted Mith Samlanh and its partners, Friends International and Peuan Peuan to implement activities that respond to the needs of communities and families in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap the Cambodia-Thailand border area of Poipet-Aranyaprathet, and urban Bangkok. 

This includes the provision of emergency support, responding to hotline calls, conducting  information campaigns during the height of the COVID-19, and assisting in job placement programs. 

Mith Samlanh works with a network of 1,100 community-based volunteers called Child Safe Agents to reach and provide immediate support to families and communities. 

Lerng Chanlim, Local resident of Poipet:

We are grateful for the CSOs that always support us and for ADB for helping us and our village survive this pandemic.

From December 2021 to January 2023, in 13 months under the contract Mith Samlanh's work has helped 1,232 individuals with employment support, with 771 confirming they have improved livelihoods. 

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