The Field Preparedness Expert was deployed to Cambodia in March 2020.
The Expert, in collaboration with the national humanitarian community and the National Disaster Management Authority – the National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM) – developed a 3W questionnaire to support stakeholder and resource mapping. The questionnaire was circulated for trials and feedback by the Humanitarian Response Forum (HRF), Joint Action Group (JAG), and Asian Preparedness Partnership Cambodia (PPC) to their respective partners including the Cambodian Humanitarian Forum (CHF) at the end of August 2020. The questionnaire will contribute to a database to be maintained and updated by NCDM.
A series of discussions were held with national humanitarian actors to introduce the Preparedness project and better understand actors’ stock prepositioning practices as well as the humanitarian logistics issues faced in the country. The meetings also touched upon potential formation of a humanitarian logistics preparedness working group. This group would collectively identify, prioritise and, through its membership base, launch activities to contribute to humanitarian logistics preparedness in Cambodia, including, for example, conducting a logistics gaps and needs analysis and a simulation exercise expanding upon the new Cambodian National and Provincial Contingency Plans.
Based on risk indices and national-level logistics performance and capacity indicators, in 2018 Cambodia was identified as one of 24 country candidates for the Global Logistics Cluster’s Field-Based Preparedness Project (“the Project”). The primary aim of the Project is to support and empower national actors to strengthen their capacity to autonomously prepare for and respond to humanitarian crises. A key element of this is the facilitation of a coordinated approach towards improving local humanitarian supply chain resilience and information exchange between the government, national actors and the private sector, to ensure all actors are well prepared for joint humanitarian logistics responses. In the event of a large-scale disaster event, and should the Government of Cambodia request international humanitarian assistance, the Global Logistics Cluster capacities can support national actors in facilitating a coordinated response.
In March 2020, a Preparedness Expert was deployed to Cambodia to commence the process of mapping national logistics capacities and identifying existing national disaster management structures and frameworks. She has worked with national responders to augment information sharing and exchange, and provided technical support and guidance towards establishing a coordinated and localised approach to humanitarian logistics preparedness activities.
Cambodia is exposed to yearly recurrent floods that place rural population and their agriculture-based livelihoods in significant risk. The last major events that depleted the capacities of national emergency responders occurred in 2011 and 2013, where a combination of successive typhoons and a strong monsoon season caused the water levels of the Tonle Sap and Mekong River to rise, leading to extensive flooding with an estimated affected population of 1.8 million.
Cambodia is further exposed to extreme weather events triggered by El-Niño causing severe drought. The hottest year recorded in 2016 triggered drought that was described by Prime Minister Hun Sen as the “worst natural disaster occurring in Cambodia in 100 years”.