The Sixth Steering Committee Meeting of the Australia-Cambodia Cooperation for Equitable Sustainable Services (ACCESS) Program

The Sixth Steering Committee Meeting of the Australia-Cambodia Cooperation for Equitable Sustainable Services (ACCESS) Program

On 17 December 2021, the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA) and the Australian Embassy to Cambodia co-chaired the Sixth Australia-Cambodia Cooperation for Equitable Sustainable Services (ACCESS) Steering Committee (ASC) Meeting to review the ACCESS Stage impacts achieved and to reflect on lessons learned. ACCESS Stage 1 period was consists of September 2018 to September 2021 implementation period. The ASC also endorsed the ACCESS Year 4 Annual Work Plan.

Mr Andreas Zurbrugg, Chargé d’Affaires of the Australian Embassy to Cambodia, and H.E Nhean Sochetra, Director General of Social Development Department of the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA), co-chaired the meeting. Other ACCESS Steering Committee members, included representatives from the Australian Embassy to Cambodia, the Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth Rehabilitation (MoSVY), MoWA, the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Ministry of Interior, the Disability Action Council, Independent Member, ACCESS team also joined the discussion.

Mr Andreas Zurbrugg praised the outstanding achievements and impacts made during the ACCESS Stage 1 of the program, while working collaboratively with the Royal Government of Cambodia. He mentioned that “The Government of Australia is proud to continue to contribute towards the promotion of the rights of women and persons with disabilities in Cambodia through our ACCESS program.”

H.E Nhean Sochetra was grateful for the on-going support from the Australian Government and was greatly satisfied and impressed with program results during the fist stage of the Program.  She mentioned the importance of our joint efforts to support the implementation of National Action Plan and to End Violence Against Women (NAPVAW) and supporting the National Disability Action Plan (NDSP). Her Excellency commented that this program continues to provide great value to all women and girls that are affected by Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and persons with disabilities. “It ensures that they receive proper services when they they need it. The support provided from the Australian Government through ACCESS responds well to the needs of those vulnerable people at national and sub-national levels,” H.E Nhean Sochetra.

Representative from the Ministry of Economy and Finance, H.E Dr Srey Vuth, Deputy Director General, greatly appreciated the Year 4 Annual workplan and other documents presented during the meeting, and acknowledged his satisfactions with ACCESS learning from stage 1 to make more optimum implementation plans under Stage 2, while also incorporating sub-national level interventions.

Every six months, ACCESS Steering Committee organize a meeting to discuss the key achievements, challenges, and lessons learned during the previous semester. Committee members also exchanged knowledge and workplan at this regular meeting.

The ACCESS Program is working in partnership with the Royal Government of Cambodia and the Implementing Partners to end violence against women and to promote disability inclusiveness.