ECOSORN is an integrated rural development programme, with the main objective to reduce poverty and enhance the incomes of target rural communities within three Provinces in the northwest of Cambodia. A team of six long-term international and 45 national experts are currently funded under the TA contract to support the Cambodian Programme Management Authority of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry (MAFF) to coordinate the management of the ECOSORN programme, which includes a grant fund of € 20 million, provided by the EU. In addition, a total of 880 short term expertise days are envisaged for the provision of specific expertise support.
The overall objective is to assist the government's efforts to reduce poverty by establishing physical transport and social infrastructure. The project has three components: (i) rural infrastructure development - to extend the rural network and to establish social infrastructure in the districts such roads, social amenities, irrigation systems and water supply; (ii) enhancement of the capacity of the public and private sector; and (iii) enhancement of the rural sector. The development of the rural infrastructure is a prerequisite for the proposed sustainable development activities of ECOSORN and has been taken into consideration in order to generate synergies.
The main target beneficiaries are smallholder farmers and their family members living in the project area. The project target group consists of 55.000 agricultural households, i.e. 280.000 people approximately
Within the anticipated results, the following are included:(1) Agricultural, livestock and fisheries production intensified, diversified and increased; (2) Economic and employment opportunities developed; (3) Empowerment of local communities; (4) Improved physical access to available social amenities and markets, greater access to potable water supplies; (5) Safer and permanent access to arable land and social infrastructure ; (6) In order to allow systematic monitoring and reporting against a set of indicators a specific objective / Result C6 "ECOSORN Project efficiently and effectively managed" has been included in in the revised LFM. This result also included the M+E activities of the project as well as the "Visibility Programme".
Instrumental to the project multitask operations was the design, establishment and operation of a Financial Management System in line with EU grant fund rules and procedures to manage the ECOSORN € 20 million grant fund. This has included development of an operational manual of procedures defining all financial management rules for accounting, procurement and auditing and training of all staff in its use and application. In addition, an integrated and fully computerized M&E system has been initiated and installed