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Region:Asia Pacific Current UN Women Plan Period Afghanisthan:2018-2022
i-icon World Bank Income Classification:Low Income The World Bank classifies economies for analytical purposes into four income groups: low, lower-middle, upper-middle, and high income. For this purpose it uses gross national income (GNI) per capita data in U.S. dollars, converted from local currency using the World Bank Atlas method, which is applied to smooth exchange rate fluctuations. i-icon Least Developed Country:Yes Since 1971, the United Nations has recognized LDCs as a category of States that are deemed highly disadvantaged in their development process, for structural, historical and also geographical reasons. Three criteria are used: per capita income, human assets, and economic vulnerability. i-icon Gender Inequality Index:0.575 GII is a composite metric of gender inequality using three dimensions: reproductive health, empowerment and the labour market. A low GII value indicates low inequality between women and men, and vice-versa. i-icon Gender Development Index:0.723 GDI measures gender inequalities in achievement in three basic dimensions of human development: health, education, and command over economic resources.
i-icon Population:209,497,025 Source of population data: United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2022). World Population Prospects: The 2022 Revision Male:19,976,265 (9.5%) Female:189,520,760 (90.5%)
Map Summary

outcome XM-DAC-41146-KHM_D_3.1

Cambodia has an enabling environment to better prevent, respond and prosecute all forms of gender-based violence [aligns to UN Women SP 2018-2021 Output 11]

During the reporting year, some progress has been observed towards this outcome. The Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA) has strengthened their leadership to coordinate with relevant stakeholders in developing a Roadmap for Reforming the Law on the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Protection of Victims (DV Law). The DV Law Roadmap was developed based on consultative meetings with key line ministries including Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Interior, National Police, and the Bar Association of the Kingdom of Cambodia, women’s rights organizations working on ending violence against women and relevant United Nations agencies including the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).The DV Law Roadmap is a stepping stone and indicates MoWA efforts towards the DV Law amendment to be in line with the international norms and standards in response to recommendation from the Committee on the Elimination of Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW Committee). The DV Law Roadmap has provided a comprehensive analysis on good practice, lessons learned, and the gaps in the implementation of the DV Law and most importantly it has identified key priorities and steps for initiating and conducting the DV Law amendment process. The roadmap analysis indicates that the majority of the DV Law articles need to be comprehensively reviewed and suggests eight significant steps towards the DV law amendment process. Due to multiple areas of the DV Law that have been analysed in need of improvement and review, the roadmap analysis suggests preparing a new version of DV law to replace the existing law. UN Women significantly contributed to the DV Law Roadmap development process through advocating for inclusive participation from women’s rights organizations working on ending violence against women and relevant stakeholders. As a result, the MoWA agreed to invite three women’s rights organizations to join together and provide space for a representative from women’s rights organizations to present the legal analysis that they have collectively conducted on the DV Law implementation during the first close-door consultative meeting in February. The MoWA has continued to engage women’s rights organizations, relevant line ministries and United Nations agencies in reviewing the draft of the DV Law Roadmap. Five women’s rights organizations joined the second close-door meeting in September, jointly reviewed and validated the draft of the DV Law Roadmap. Overall, key stakeholders including women’s rights organizations agreed on the substance of the roadmap analysis and women’s rights organizations called for the MoWA and the Government to initiate the DV Law amendment process with a clear timeline. However, there has not been any common decision whether to draft a new law or to amend some articles. The workshop suggested the decision is to be made later by MoWA senior leadership management team with the advice from the Minister. Up to date, MOWA has indicated a positive commitment to adopting the DV Law Roadmap and this was highlighted in one of the 14 key priorities presented at the MoWA annual congress on 12 January 2024 to the Prime Minister. Another significant achievement is that MOWA has strengthened its ownership towards the final evaluation of the third National Action Plan to Prevent Violence against Women (NAPVAW III). The MOWA has increased its confidence to coordinate with 17 line ministry members of the Technical Working Group on Gender-Gender Based Violence (TWGG-GBV) to conduct the final evaluation. Working closely with UN Women, MoWA has ensured inclusive participatory approaches throughout the final evaluation process. As a result, a total of 351 people (255 women) from the Government both at the national and sub-national levels, civil society organizations, development partners and women survivors of violence including Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people and women migrant workers participated in consultations in Phnom Penh and five provinces. The findings of the final evaluation have provided strong evidence base on the progress and gaps in the implementation of the NAPVAW III, most importantly strategic recommendations that would help better inform the MoWA and the TWGG-GBV on areas of improvement in the NAPVAW IV formulation process. It is important to note that the MoWA has accepted the recommendation and committed itself to addressing them in NAPVAW IV to ensure effective primary GBV prevention, and quality essential service response to the survivors. The achievement above indicates that the planned strategy remains consistent, relevant and effective for ending violence against women programme work in Cambodia context. This was reflected in the findings from the Cambodia Demographic and Health Survey (2021-2022) which showed there was a decrease of prevalence of violence against women from 29 per cent in 2014 to 21 per cent in 2021-2022. The findings from the final evaluation of the NAPVAW III also show women survivors are more aware of and accessed available services and service providers, as 31 per cent of women who have ever experienced any physical or sexual violence sought help in 2021- 2022, an increase from 24 per cent in 2015. However, the vast majority of women survivors of violence do not seek help indicating more work is needed to support women survivors to access services. In addition, the NAPVAW III remains a very important guiding document for multi-sectoral coordination on ending violence against women and girls, and the TWGG-GBV and GBV Working Groups, have served as platforms to coordinate and collaborate on GBV prevention and response. The NAPVAW III is part of a longer term effort and commitment of the Royal Government to end violence against women and girls in Cambodia, and needs to be viewed with both a short term lens for accelerating progress on providing quality services to women and girls affected by violence and those at risk and sustained longer term efforts to address gender inequalities and harmful gender norms that perpetuate violence against women and girls.
outcome XM-DAC-41146-KHM_D_3.2

Women, girls and LGBTIQ persons who experience violence are empowered to use available, accessible and quality essential services and recover from violence. [UN Women SP 2018-2021 Output 11]

The outcome result was achieved during this reporting year. Women subject to violence including women migrant workers reach support effectively when they need it. In 2023, a total of 130 cases of gender-based violence received support through the Helpline of Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA) and Child Helpline Cambodia (CHC). The cases reported indicates that more women and their families become aware of the services and come forward to access services. This was made possible because of the dedicated effort and effective delivery of services by MoWA and CHC. A returning women migrant worker has confirmed during the focus group discussion for the endline-survey on quality service provision “My mother reached out to the Child Helpline to seek assistance for my return to Cambodia from China. Thanks to the Safe and Fair (SAF) programme, I also received vital support services such as food, legal aid, and counselling. I have now secured employment, which gives me the confidence to support myself and take care of my mother. I am determined to avoid returning to the circumstances where I endured violence.” Capacity Development Result: front-line service providers have strengthened their capacities to effectively provide helpline services. Forty-seven (47) front-line service providers (31 women and 16 men from eight different Provincial Departments of Women’s Affairs (PDoWAs) and police officers learnt about the key guiding principles including a human rights approach, ensuring safety, empowerment, privacy, and confidentiality, provide guidance and procedures for the helpline operators for responding to calls from Gender Based Violence (GBV) survivors in the Standard Operation Procedures (SOPs) for Helpline Operators to ensure qualify identification of and response to cases of violence against women including women migrant workers. Based on the evaluation of the pre and post-tests, participants increased their learning 13%. A key area with significant change was the understanding of paraverbal communication with 74%, a plan for addressing lost calls and helpline role with 95% correct response. UN Women contributed through SAF programme by supporting MoWA to co-facilitate the session on the SOPs. This enhanced capacity contributed to effective provision of support services to victims/survivors of violence. CHC front-line staff has continued to apply the survivor-centred approaches and quality essential service response to women subjected to violence including women migrant workers through counselling, information sharing and referral services to other service providers via helpline (1280), Interactive Voice Response (IVR) and My Journey Mobile Application. One participant from CHC mentioned during a focus group discussion for the end-line survey on quality service provision "Before SAF, many front-line service providers were unaware of the unique challenges faced by women migrant workers. The training sessions opened their eyes to these issues and provided them with practical skills to offer more effective support." As a result, throughout 2023, the IVR continued to receive a high number of calls with a total of 17,781 calls. Of the 17,781 IVR calls, 84 calls were from women, 53 calls from men, 16 calls from Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer (LGBTIQ), and 17,628 from unknown-age and unknown gender callers. UN Women contributed through providing financial support to CHC to operate the Helpline (1280), which is linked with IVR. Moreover, UN Women also provided financial support to CHC to upgrade the My Journey Mobile Application to ensure privacy of the users and provide most updated services information. Peer Network: the community-based peer leader and its members at Borsedth District, Kampong Spue Province has continued to share information about service providers for survivors of GBV and sharing the information about the My Journey Mobile Application. Sreymom, a member of the peer network said “I use the App to share information about safe migration in my community. I've also shared the App with relatives who want to migrate and for those who are already in Thailand and don’t have support or know which path to take if they get in trouble. So, I asked them to download the App, listen to it, and use its features. They told me the App is very helpful because it provides contact information and has everything to solve our problems. They love the App because now they have something reliable to rely on.” This comprehensive community based approached contributed to informative support service to survivor of violence. Community Outreach: the endline survey indicates that the community outreach remains significant and effective to improve the awareness raising among women and community and to access quality services. As quoted by one of the participants during the focus group discussion: "Through SAF, we have conducted outreach programmes in communities, where we have established peer educator groups and focal points. These individuals continue to raise awareness about safe migration and essential services within their communities. This support is crucial because it empowers family members of survivors to know whom to contact for assistance in their villages and communities. Additionally, SAF has also helped us build strong connections with local authorities, so we can work together better.” The achievement above indicates that the planned strategy is largely applicable and relevant. Through enhancing the publicly available of services information and quality essential service response, women, girls and LGBTIQ persons who experienced violence and community are empowered to come forward and seek for services. Lesson learned suggests the promotion and implementation of helpline SOPs are necessary to extend nation-wide to ensure the quality of GBV services response. In addition, the extension of the community outreach to support women including women migrant workers and their family members to ensure the available and quality service delivery and understand their needs and challenges remains significant and relevant to Cambodia context. Lastly, the continuation to strengthen the migrant workers and community-based peer networks is crucial to build the trust and confidence of women subject to violence including the migrant workers to access support services, availability of safe spaces, dissemination of information, and advocacy efforts related to ending violence against women.
outcome XM-DAC-41146-KHM_D_4.1

SN Outcome 4: National and sub-national responses to climate change and Disaster Risk Reduction incorporate and address the priorities and needs of all women in Cambodia.

In the reporting year, good progress has been made on ensuring that the disaster risk reduction mechanism is more gender transformative. The National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) developed a new National Action Plan for Disaster Risk Reduction (NAP-DRR) covering the period from 2024 to 2027 as the previous national action plan (2018-2023) has been completed. A review for the NAP-DRR 2018-2023 has been conducted to inform the development of the NAP-DRR 2024-2027 which is being drafted. UN Women has provided both technical and financial support to ensure that the review of the previous NAP-DRR is conducted with gender lens and provide gender mainstreaming input while another review report has been developed with the focus on gender as a gender standalone report for future reference of the National Committee for Disaster Management Secretariat (NCDMS) to better gender related works. UN Women has supported NCDMS in its work to integrate gender in disaster risk reduction. UN Women has partnered with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in providing both the review of the NAP-DRR 2018-2023 and the development of NAP-DRR 2024-2027. UNDP has provided a more general input into the review and the development of the new NAP-DRR, while UN Women has ensured the gender equality and social inclusion aspects of both documents. While UNDP is focusing on collecting data for general review and inputs, UN Women has interviewed key stakeholders including women-led organizations, civil society organizations (CSOs) and international non-governmental organizations (INGOs) working on women's empowerment and disaster management as well as key government actors including gender focal person of NCDM and representatives from the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA). Additionally, UN Women, UNDP and World Food Programme (WFP) have jointly provided technical and financial support to NCDM to conduct national consultations which allows key actors including sub-national actors, relevant ministries, CSOs and development partners to provide inputs for the new NAP development. The link to the consultative event can be found via this link . The approach to engage, develop capacity of, and sensitize key national coordinating bodies for disaster risk reduction work remains largely relevant while the theory of change remains applicable. There has been slight adaptation to expand the work not only with gender focal persons or groups but to engage with other departments to work to accelerate gender mainstreaming. Once the current draft gender responsive NAP-DRR is officially adopted and implemented, gender equality and social inclusion will be the core principle of NAP-DRR implementation and can potentially attract more investment for concrete gender related works. The current achievement is rooted in the joint efforts among the United Nations sister agencies who have been supporting NCDMs in various aspects. Thus, it is crucial for the United Nations agencies to join hands and invest in internal coordination for a bigger outcome. Moreover, during the year, a gender responsive socio-economic recovery action has enabled a reduction in disaster impacts on the most vulnerable groups of women including women living with HIV, women affected by HIV/AIDS, women living in rural areas, women migrant workers/returnees and women living in disaster prone areas. A comparison of baseline and endline survey results showed a significant reduction of such impacts by 16 per cent from 76 per cent to 60 per cent among the target women. The intervention has reduced the perception of negative socio-economic COVID-19 pandemic impacts. This includes reducing inefficient awareness and knowledge about COVID-19, adverse economic effect and food security, detrimental effect on employment and income and difficulties in accessing education. While all women have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, it was even worse for the vulnerable groups of women due to their limited capacity to adapt to change and resilience to socio-economic impacts. Through partnership with local women-led organizations and direct implementation by UN Women, women living in disaster prone areas, women migrant workers, and women living with HIV have expanded their livelihood options and communicating their needs and concerns to duty bearers as they enhanced capacities to actively engage in a dialogue with duty bearers and access livelihood resources. Sixty women were able to actively engage in the community dialogue in which they voiced their needs and concern about health care, children’s education and social services as well as gaining new information in regard to health care services, scholarship programme for their children and other pro-poor services. Twenty-Seven women report having gain new knowledge on basic financial literacy, job seeking skill and business development which allowed them to effectively manage their existing resources, explore potential business option and seek possible expansion of their existing business. Additionally, women significantly increased their confidence for participating in income generation activities and acknowledged their active role in the economic recovery of their family. This has been reflected in the human interest story which can be accessed via this link The planned strategy seems to be effective for women’s empowerment, as it increases their capacity for a resilient livelihood. However, the proposed approach may require longer time frame than the current duration of the project to significantly improve income generation for the targeted groups of women. Thus, the focus of the approach has shifted to look into the improvement of skills and access to employment rather than the increase in income itself which can be observed within the project implementation period. Women have become more confident to claim their valuable role in the economy for their families negotiate equal decision-making power. At the same time, women can become more economically empowered and secure as they acquire more information about employment opportunities and livelihood options. The intervention has proved to be effective and can be even more effective with the work with male partners and family of women as well as the community. For future intervention of similar projects, there should be more investment as well on the work with men particularly on transforming toxic masculinity along with building women’s confidence to negotiate the power of decision-making in the family.
outcome XM-DAC-41146-KHM_D_6.1

The RGC resources, coordinates and transparently monitors implementation of international commitments to GE&WE, in consultation with rights holders including Young women and LGBTIQ persons.

There has been significant progress for this outcome in 2023. The Seventh Legislature of the National Assembly shows a political commitment in advancing gender equality and promoting the rights of women and girls through its policy agenda, including in the Pentagonal Strategy Phase I. With the support of UN Women, the Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC) carried out monitoring of the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) at the sub-national level, and promoted women’s voice in peace and security. The RGC, through the work of Cambodia National Council for Women (CNCW), has honoured the ratification of CEDAW by investing national resources in the monitoring work by sub-national actors and through drafting a Roadmap for the Development of Progress Report of the Implementation of the CEDAW Concluding Observation. The development of the Roadmap is considered a crucial step for Cambodia to the compilation the Seventh Periodic Report to CEDAW. Meanwhile, women’s personal and professional experiences working in Peace Operations have been voiced through the report on Measuring Opportunities for Women in Peace Operations. The draft report has been submitted to RGC for final comments. The report provides evidence-based recommendations for improving future work on women, peace and security in the Cambodian context as well as ensuring doing no harm for women and promoting their role and leadership in cross-border peace building. In this process, UN Women has provided financial, technical and coordination support between research institutions and the key actors in RGC. In addition, national dialogues in building understanding of women, peace security with wide range of stakeholders, including youth, has fuelled national commitment towards the development of a National Action Plan on Women, Peace, and Security, which is part of CEDAW Concluding Observation 13 (b) and 13 (c). Facebook Additionally, during this reporting period, the young women’s and LGBTQI movements have been able to communicate their issues to the public and duty bearers. Breakthrough (BT) and Love Is Diversity (LID), are two successful movements working towards gender equality and addressing discrimination. The movements have continuously created space and empowered young women and LGBTIQ communities through social media and dialogue platforms as well as outreach. Since its establishment till present, LID has reached thousands of people and provided LGBTIQ people with a safe space to share their stories and seek support and information about their rights. The movement has also been able to convey messages which reflect the communities and individual’s experiences and needs of the communities and the individuals to the public and duty bearers for further advocacy. At the same time the BT Movement, led by young women, to combat promote gender equality, challenge, and break through discriminatory social norms, continues to use a social media platform to create dialogues on key emerging harmful gendered social norms that deny women and girls their human rights. The movements have showcased young women’s stories, experiences and voice and have served as a space to start dialogues leading to young women’s empowerment. The achievements above show the relevance and effectiveness of the strategy which works based on applying a human rights-based approach focusing on women’s rights and movement building. While working with duty bearers at the national level, the UN Women is also working to support rights holders, such as those in these two movements, to continue demanding their rights and raising awareness on the issues and their rights, as well as providing a space to start dialogues. This clearly indicates that the strategy provided an opportunity to experiment through the co-creative process of youth group as right holders within their movement for advocacy work that lead to increased investment in monitoring and implementation of the laws and policies as well as positive changes for women’s participation in the public sphere.
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