The Story of Noch Saroeun – Safe and Cheap Drinking Water, Harder and Harder to Find in Drought-Prone Areas


Saroeun with his wife Sin Ip and two of his three children 

Noch Saroeun, 48 years, lives with his family (his wife and 3 boys) in Bantey Meas Khang Kaeut commune, Bantey Meas district, Kampot province. He works as a construction worker providing building services in his commune. Whereas beforehand, he was a rice paddy farmer. But he abandoned the farm due to climatic conditions that made it so unprofitable and risky that he decided to engage in other income opportunities. Others in his village have even migrated to Thailand to find work as wage laborers in the construction sector or in factories. 

Saroeun benefits from sales of cheap and safe drinking water by a community-run water station. In addition, training on hygiene and sanitation practices were held in his village.  



“I used to buy it at the local market, a jar (25 liters) for about 3500 Riel. We use around 8 to 10 jars per month. Nowadays, I buy from the station, for 1500 Riel a 20 liter-jar. The months during which the station did not function though, I had to go back and buy at the market. I prefer the water by the station, I know the people that produce it and I trust them. That is not the case at the market. We have remarkedly less often cholera cases and other diarrheal diseases among the family members since we drink the water from the station.”

Noch Saroeun

Read the story