Sumsung on Thursday presented US$17,000 as a financial support to World Renew Laos to fund its integrated development initiatives in northern Laos.
The financial package was presented by General Manager of Samsung Electronics Laos Sung Ho Soy to World Renew Laos Country Representative Mike Fennema in the presence of invited guests and relevant officials of both sides.
World Renew has been involved in supporting development initiatives in Laos since 1997.
Currently, World Renew is at the midpoint of two, similar, long-term integrated development projects partnering with ethnic communities in two provinces in northern Laos.
The project in Phongsaly started in February 2013, will continue through December 2018, and is being carried out in partnership with the Non-Formal Education Department, Ministry of Education.
The project in Xieng Khuang started in July 2014, will continue till the end of June 2019, and is being undertaken in partnership with the Department of Social Welfare, Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare.
In Xieng Khuang, the project is partnering with 37 villages across three districts – Nonghet, Kham and Khoun with a total population of 14,454 people. In Mai district in Phongsaly, the project partners with 16 villages with a total population of 3,376 people.
These community development projects are focusing on education, health and sanitation, agriculture and food security, livelihoods, and the building of leadership capacity in local communities.
The project areas are very remote and communities are characterised by the core issues which are generally associated with rural poverty such as a lack of access to clean water and markets, insufficient access to services, and limited means of earning livelihoods. The root causes of rural poverty are complex and interrelated and efforts to overcome the causes benefit from the multipronged approach that the project takes.
The programmes aim to improve livelihoods by educating villagers about food security issues, decreasing the prevalence of preventable diseases through better hygiene, increasing the accessibility of education, and building and strengthening a core group of community leaders within each village.
Community members engage and participate in each facet of the programme; learning by doing ensures that lessons become incorporated into daily practice. The ownership by the community that results from this process of engaging with communities contributes to its sustainability.