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Outreach activity of Strengthening Grassroots Democracy Project (SGD)

The outreach activities are to provide communities with the confidence and opportunities to share their ideas and have their voices heard in local decision-making processes. Duty bearers are supported to develop the skills to be open to and respectful of community ideas and to follow through on their commitments. Outreach activities also introduce citizens to the democracy processes in Cambodia and help citizens to understand the process of influencing the Commune Investment Plan (CIP)

The majority of the outreach is conducted at the houses of the villagers with peer-to-peer or group presentations. The outreach session is divided into two parts: the first part is to raise the awareness of the people about the commune investment program and the role of the commune councilors in that process. Additionally, the role and rights of the citizen in the process is discussed, and how they can monitor the implementation of the CIP as well as providing feedback on the services provided by the duty bearers. The second part of the session is to assess the current situation in the village or commune. Villagers can share their opinions on the progress or challenges happening in their communities as a result of the work of the commune council; what other issues they would like the CCs to address; and how they want those issues to be addressed.

The outreach sessions are very popular and are an effective way of ensuring all of the villagers have a voice in the local democratic processes. Overall, most of the villagers reported having a good understanding of the CIP process and their rights as citizens. Villagers felt confident to express their ideas and concerns to the CCs and the CCs/CCWCs received additional information about issues that they need to consider to be included in the CIP.

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