Vocational qualification course for young people

Khmer and Kavet literacy course in the Ratanakiri province

Gardening in a centre for lifelong learning

Training on "Promoting women's participation in adult education"

DVV International has been working in Cambodia since 2009 with the support of partner organisations which were accompanied by the Regional Office in Laos. Since January 2017, a national office has been coordinating the projects.

French colonial rule, the Vietnam War and especially the dreaded regime of the Khmer Rouge left deep wounds in Cambodia. The reevaluation of history continues. After more than 20 years, the first free elections were held in 1991. Since then, a vibrant civil society has developed. However, democracy in Cambodia is on (increasingly) shaky legs. On the one hand many Cambodians have been able to profit from the benefits of economic growth, on the other hand, poverty remains a major problem and affects around half of the population. Cambodia’s post-war generation is very young – of the approximately 14 million inhabitants, 60 percent are under 30 years old. Thus every year up to 300,000 young people are thrust into the national labour market, often without secondary education or vocational qualifications.

DVV International strengthens the civil society and state commitment to non-formal adult education in Cambodia.

Main focus of work

Basic education: DVV International, together with the non-governmental organisation Non-Timber Forest Products, NTFP, is implementing basic education measures for children and adults at the village level in Ratanakiri Province. These offers, which are especially aimed at ethnic minorities, are intended to help the participants cope with and benefit from the radical change their region is undergoing due to the rapidly advancing plantation economy.

Volunteer programmes: In cooperation with the Youth Department of the Ministry of Education, DVV International organises volunteer placements in learning centres in remote areas. This often provides the centres with additional, temporary support from teaching staff. At the same time, it enables young people to gain a better understanding of the challenges in the non-formal education sector.

Capacity building for women: Due to their role in society and family, many women have difficulty accessing educational opportunities. This is especially true in the non-formal sector. Together with the Royal University of Phnom Penh and various actors in the Ministry of Education, DVV International is therefore developing and piloting educational approaches that are particularly aimed at women, strengthening their social role but also their independence.

Centres for Lifelong Learning: Community Learning Centres (CLCs) function as an essential institution for education at the non-formal level. With the Department of Non-formal Education, DVV International is developing these into Lifelong Learning Centres, which are locally run to provide all citizens with the opportunity for lifelong learning, but also to generate additional income by learning new vocational skills.

Lifelong Learning: In close coordination with UNESCO, DVV International supported the Department of Non-Formal Education of the Ministry of Education. DVV International also assisted in the development of a Lifelong Learning Policy, which establishes the concept of lifelong learning as fundamental to the education system. It is now being brought to life and implemented in inter- and intra-ministerial cooperation.


DVV International’s central partner is the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, in particular the Department of Non-formal Education and the Department of Youth Resource Management.  DVV International works closely with the Faculty of Education at the Royal University of Phnom Penh in the development of curricula and teaching materials. In the field of basic education and services for ethnic minorities, DVV International cooperates with the NGO Non-Timber Forest Products. The Cambodia Women Development Association is also involved in piloting educational programmes for women.

Contact in Cambodia

DVV International
Country Office Cambodia
No.106, St.304, Sangkat Boeng Keng Kang II,
Khan Chamkar Morn, Phnom Penh

Country Director:
Peou Vanna

Contact in Germany

Senior Desk Office South-East Asia:
Thomas Rößer

More information

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