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About Us

In 2017, Wathnakpheap Organisation (WPO) celebrates 20 years since we were first registered as a local NGO. Since 1997, WP has set a benchmark in Cambodia for rural community development. Over 90% of our population are in rural areas, most living just above or below the poverty line. It is our mission to deliver sustainable improvement to rural communities that are most in need of progress. Our 4 programs tackle Nutrition, Education, Micro-financing and Good Governance. These 4 areas are vital to realize our vision of a safe, dignified, and harmonic Cambodia for all people.

WPO originally operated as part of of Switzerland-based International NGO called Stiftung Kinderorf Pestalozzi (SKIP); now known as
Pestalozzi Children Village’s Foundation.  SKIP ran a Community Development Project and Child Rehabilitation and Development Project from 1993 to 1996 in Pursat province. This was WPO's first project, and catalyst for NGO registration with the Ministry of Interior in 1997.

In 2002, WPO became self-governing and independent from SKIP. In 2003, three of WP’s former projects in Pursat Province were successfully localized and become independent NGOs from Wathnakpheap. These NGOs are Anakut Kumar, Kumar Ney Kdey Sangkheum, and Ponleu Kumar, and are all good examples of our capabilities and competences in starting something that works, and building self-governance.

We operate our 4 programs in six provinces:

  • Pursat
  • Svay Rieng
  • Siem Reap
  • Kampong Cham
  • Kampong Thom
  • Kratie

These provinces have an unusually high poverty rate and have high migration patterns. Therefore, programs focus on risk prevention and community-based rehabilitation that trickle down to solving our primary concern: children & youth at high risk of being trafficked for labor exploitation.

Every year, children, young people and their families benefit from numerous projects across the country, grounded in our 4 program areas. Although WPO's headquarters is based in Phnom Penh, management is decentralized, affording each of the six provinces in which we operate a high level of autonomy.

WPO has incomparable experience in rural community development in Cambodia, particularly in the areas of:

  • Community based child development
  • Trafficking prevention, repatriation and rehabilitation
  • Formal and non-formal education
  • Vocational training, and income generation activities
  • Microfinancing, and local business development
  • Good governance and civic engagement

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