Alex Gonzalez-Davidson, Somnang Sim, Heng Meng, and Ven Lek, Mother Nature, Save the Adeng Campaign

Alejandro-Gonzalez-DavidsonAlex Gonzalez-Davidson, along with Somnang Sim, Heng Meng, and Ven Lek and, comprise Mother Nature, a volunteer-led movement fighting for environmental justice in Cambodia.

The Areng Valley  is one of Cambodia’s most important biological hotspots and home to the Khmer Daeum indigenous groups.  As a biodiversity jewel, the Valley is also a place where animist traditions have allowed species of fauna and flora (such as the Siamese crocodiles) to exist in relative abundance. A proposed hydro dam would obliterate this incredible biodiversity and obliterate the livelihoods of the 1500 people currently living in the area. Mother Nature and the surrounding local communities believe that this dam must not be built due to the massive impact over lesser benefit.

Mother Nature, a volunteer-based movement of nature activists and Buddhist Monks, is coordinating the Save the Areng Valley campaign which empowers local indigenous communities to raise awareness about a proposed dam that will cause widespread financial and environmental damage to the surrounding community.  They are working to fulfill the vision in which humans co-exist with nature in a balanced way, something that, to be achieved, involves the promotion of justice towards the environment and to those communities that depend on it for their everyday lives.  “These indigenous communities, with their simple, spiritually rich lives and virtually non existing carbon foot print, are potential flag-bearers of the kind of life we want to promote within Cambodia.” says Alex.

To find out more about Mother Nature and their Save the Areng Valley campaign, check out their website and Facebook page.

GRANT AWARD DATE:  DECEMBER 16, 2013