As we do in other countries, we also research the current demographic trends and policy to find important developments and key issues. In a serie of 3 articles you can read about Cambodia.
From all census and research information done in Cambodia, the following key issues are formulated:
Many elderly are living in poverty, with a lack of basic income.
2. Lack of affordable health care services
Health care services are a huge expense for elderly, and many can not afford (enough) care.
3. Food security
There is a decreasing living standard, mainly concerning food, when people get older. Elderly rely on support of their children mostly to provide enough food.
Rural poverty and lack of income opportunities force adult children to migrate from the rural area to Phnom Penh and other cities. There is a growing group even emigrating to neighboring countries for work. Their aging parents are left in the rural village, mostly with their grandchildren to care for. Their migrated adult children try to send money monthly, but only when they can generate enough income themselves.
5. HIV / AIDS
Elderly parents take care for their sick children, and take care for orphaned grandchildren, due to AIDS.
All these issues are expected to become more urgent in the coming years, due to social, economic en demographic developments. The welfare of elderly in Cambodia is severely challenged by these issues.
There has been very little interest in elderly from the government, NGO’s and researchers so far. The issues that the elderly are facing, demand action and more information about the lives of elderly.