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Satellite photo of the Tonle Sap Lake


Much has been studied and written about the unique aspects of the Tonle Sap Lake and its surrounding region: its exquisite beauty; the area's biodiversity and its unique hydrodynamics that lead to providing roughly a third of the protein--from fish--for more than half of Cambodia. Little, however, is said about the people who live upon the lake in "floating villages" and along its shores.


They are an ethnically diverse population of Khmers, Cham, and Vietnamese who experience a life isolated from both the modern world AND the progress that is happening in much of Cambodia. Many communities are hours or even more than a full day away from any medical care or expertise.

Little can actually be quantified as to the state of health of the thousands of families living in this area. This project is just a beginning.

Objectives:

To provide essential public health dental services to poor and disenfranchised / vulnerable groups living in the Tonle Sap Lake region of Siem Reap, Battambang, and Kampong Cham provinces.

  1. Children below the age of 16
  2. Women of childbearing years[1]
To provide basic education (Primary Public Health Care) related to healthy living:
  1. Nutrition
    a. Breastfeeding, complimentary feeding
    b. Floating gardens as promoted by other NGOs ("Google" Osmose + Cambodia)

  2. Clean water

  3. Household and village hygiene

  4. Immunizations

  5. Prenatal care

  6. Birth-spacing

  7. Critical thinking as related to family economics

To provide screening and early detection (Secondary Public Health Care) of common childhood illnesses with timely and appropriate referrals for such problems as:

  1. Cleft lip and palates

  2. Club foot

  3. Neuro-disabilities

  4. Cardiac disease

  5. Vision impairment

To provide a venue for cooperative and complimentary activities with other NGOs whenever possible.

  • Water quality studies.

  • Lake depth and sedimentation studies.

  • Community development and education.

    [1] Recent studies have shown a correlation between periodontal disease and premature and low birth weight


Link: http://www.ilec.or.jp/eg/lbmi/reports/25_Lake_Tonle_Sap_27February2006.pdf