Holt International: Cambodia

Holt began caring for Cambodian children and families in the 1970s, first in refugee camps in neighboring Thailand where thousands of Cambodians fled to escape civil war and the brutal authoritarian rule of the Khmer Rouge regime. Not until two decades later, however, did we begin developing programs in Cambodia. Shortly afterward, in 1994, Holt had to suspend programs in response to ongoing instability. Returning in 2005, Holt now allies with sponsors and donors to help protect children at risk of trafficking and exploitation, provide the resources families need to rise above poverty, and help children thrive in the loving care of their families or join loving, permanent families via in-country adoption in Cambodia.

Holt is a member of Family Care First.

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Where they operate

Main Areas of Work

What They Do

Country Office

With international adoption to the U.S. closed since 2001, Holt concentrates efforts in Cambodia on keeping children in families, and out of institutions. Through ongoing partnership with local organization Pathways to Development, Holt supports family preservation services ranging from nutrition, health and medical aid to school materials for children and income-generating opportunities for parents. 

For a handful of families, Pathways administers grants to cultivate small businesses such as raising livestock, growing vegetables or running a grocery. By generating their own income, families become increasingly self-sufficient and able to provide long-term stability for their children. Holt's partner also provides remedial and English language classes for over 200 children and maintains a community library on site. All together, these resources and services provide the fundamental support that keeps families together and prevents child abandonment.