COVID-19 Slowing Cambodia’s Fight Against Hunger

Hunger is an issue that has long plagued a number of countries in Southeast Asia. Cambodia, a developing country between Thailand and Vietnam, remains one of the poorest nations in the region.

But, in recent years, Cambodia has made notable progress towards improving citizens’ nutrition. This can be seen from the reduction of children’s stunting occurrences (low-height-for-age) from 42 percent in 2005 to 32 percent in 2014. The kingdom’s poverty rate had also decreased from 53 percent in 2004 to 13.5 percent in 2014. It is now expected to be below 10 percent.

Since the end of the Khmer Rouge in 1979, organisations such as Action Against Hunger and the World Food Programme (WFP) have helped vulnerable Cambodians “meet their emergency needs and have access to nutritious, safe and diverse foods.” Moreover, in a bid to meet its goal of ending hunger in the kingdom by 2030, the government in collaboration with the WFP created programmes to promote access to nutritious diets within Cambodia. An example of this is the WFP-supported home-grown school feeding programme.

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