Sunday, July 25, 2010


This organization is a small, US-funded NGO that began after an American couple visited Cambodia and saw first-hand the level of poverty in the country. After forming Trailblazers in 2005 they currently spend their time equally in Cambodia and their home state of Wyoming. They are currently in the states and we met with the local director to discuss their operations.

The organization has 4 main areas in which they assist Cambodia’s poor: Water, Education, Agriculture and Business. The director stressed that all their work is done with much consultation with expert researchers, local communities and where applicable, the Cambodian government agencies. The emphasis on all their projects is long-term sustainability, they educate and involve the communities to ensure ownership and independence.

We were given a tour of their workshop and saw how bio-sand filters were constructed – these filters remove 98% of bacteria in the water and are cheap to construct, easy to maintain and last for years. They also do agricultural research on behalf of villages, identifying high-yield seeds and fertilizers suitable for Cambodian conditions in addition to producing wells, fertilizer and irrigation systems.

All the technologies produced by Trailblazers are sold to the villagers at 1%-5% of their actual cost and the money raised is then used to seed village funds which offer micro-loans to poor families. They also are involved in constructing school buildings and developing income-generation projects such as sewing and beauty product enterprises.

1 comment:

  1. Until I read the blog, I thought the plaque was dedicated to the donation of a bucket...