Kampong Speu Province is a land of contrasts. It is rich with extraordinary culture and abundant natural beauty. But Kampong Speu is one of Cambodia’s poorest provinces economically. Its residents face challenging socioeconomic conditions and a significant student dropout rate. Extreme poverty prevents most students from studying at secondary school, primarily because they need to earn income for their families. In Kampong Speu Province:
- 44% of all households fall below the poverty line and live on less than $0.50 per day;
- 90% of all households do not have access to a sanitary toilet;
- There is only 1 health clinic for every 24,200 people; and
- Schools are overcrowded with high dropout rates.
CFF focuses its work in Kampong Speu Province for several reasons. First, CFF sees an extraordinary opportunity for education to thrive here, to empower students to realise their potential, and to impart upon scholars leadership abilities, critical thinking skills, and a strong sense of community. Second, CFF has an existing relationship with Kampong Speu schools, residents, and officials, and hopes to leverage this existing network into stronger opportunities for our scholars. Third, CFF has a desire to stay narrow and dig deep. We see the value in concentrating on one province to create and sustain lasting relationships with the community, and its officials, schools, and people. Finally, because of Kampong Speu’s proximity and accessibility to Phnom Penh, our Cambodia Team, Global Team, partners, and volunteers can visit more often and easily.
Kampong Speu Province is located to the west of Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital and largest city. It borders Kampong Chhnang and Pursat to the north, Phnom Penh to the east, Kampot and Takeo to the south, and Koh Kong to the west. The province is 7,017 square km.