Caritas Luxembourg works to promote the wellbeing of men and women, particularly those who are excluded, helpless or deprived, regardless of their origin, age, nationality, or their philosophical or religious views.
Caritas Luxembourg acts towards social inclusion in Luxembourg and around the world. Support to vulnerable populations is the organization’s primary concern. At international level, Caritas Luxembourg takes the side of victims of natural disasters and violent conflicts, supports reconstruction and rehabilitation efforts and carries out development projects
Sustainable community development
Caritas Luxembourg in Laos (CLL) strongly believes that community development can be strengthened by income diversification, increased resilience to disasters, strengthening of governance and development of adapted infrastructure for improved access to clean water, sanitation and health services
Capacity building for local actors is at the heart of Caritas Luxembourg in Laos’ (CLL) strategy. By supporting the elaboration of Village Development Plans, activities build village authorities’ capacities in planning for development. Communities participate in the construction and management of their infrastructures, which ensures their sustainability. In addition, CLL strengthens capacities of Local Civil Society Organizations (LCSOs) and creates space for cooperation between them and local authorities.
High deforestation rates in Lao PDR foster the negative impacts of climate change over the country. CLL supports environmental preservation through setting-up forest protection and fish reproduction zones. Organic producer groups are supported to ensure livelihoods strengthening and environmental preservation come hand in hand.
Gender equality is at the heart of CLL’s strategy. Equal benefits of projects to women and men is ensured through support to women groups for income generating activities and by channeling project activities through the Lao Women Union. Gender discrimination is addressed by raising awareness on violence against women
Reducing poverty in Laos through diversified livelihoods
In rural areas of Laos, people’s livelihoods are mostly agriculture-based. However, many factors ranging from crop and animal disease to limited access to markets and natural disasters put farmers in precarious living conditions. Caritas Luxembourg in Laos supports families to regain control over their lives by supporting livestock raising, organic agriculture and handicraft production.
Caritas Luxembourg in Laos implements a holistic approach at village and district levels to address all leviers of poverty. Organic vegetables, livestock and weaving production groups are supported in villages and benefit from funding, technical trainings and improved access to market. Forest and fish reproduction zones are set up with clear rules to ensure that livelihood strengthening and environmental preservation are compatible. Participatory land-use mapping and hand-over of secured land titles allow communities to use their land sustainably. Finally, good governance is fostered through the establishment of Village Development Plans and capacity building to local authorities.
Disaster risk reduction
Preparing communities to react before, during and after disaster
As climate change impacts are rising in Laos, storms, extreme floods, landslides and drought periods become more severe and frequent. The most-affected population are poor communities in rural area, which have limited means to protect their lives and assets.
Caritas Luxembourg in Laos builds the capacities of Village, District and Provincial Disaster Management Committees. Risks assessments are done in the villages to map the risks and their impacts, early warning systems are set-up to warn on upcoming disasters, and communities are trained on protecting themselves through simulation exercises. Infrastructures are also rehabilitated to ensure villagers can access to essential services and have increased resilience to disasters.
Health and nutrition
Improving basic living conditions
Limited access to clean water and poor sanitation and hygiene practices are key factors of malnutrition. Caritas Luxembourg in Laos secures access to clean water through distribution of water filters and construction of water systems. Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Transformation trainings are implemented to empower communities to improve hygiene behaviours and reduce waterborne diseases. Health Centres’ staff are also supported for improved health services to communities.
Limited coordination for nutrition across sectors limits progresses toward reducing malnutrition in Laos. CLL strengthens nutrition governance by organizing provincial meetings where civil society, INGOs and local authorities share knowledge and lessons learned on nutrition topics. Provincial nutrition governance is also strengthened through capacity building to the Provincial Nutrition Committees and increased cooperation between authorities and LCSOS.