People Protecting Ecosystem (PEM) is a ten-year program, divided into three phases, in Cambodia, Laos PDR, and Vietnam from 2013-2022. The project aimed to contribute to the conservation of aquatic resources and river ecosystems in the Mekong, Sesan and Srepok rivers by strengthening community-based management of terrestrial and riverine eco-systems in high bio-diversity value areas of the Mekong and its distributaries.
The Mekong River and its major tributaries are one of the most critical riverine ecosystems in Indo-Burma, supporting the largest inland fisheries in the world and sustains the livelihood of much of the 65 million people living in the Mekong Basin. This eco-region is under severe threat as governments implement an economic growth model based on unsustainable resource exploitation that further marginalizes poor local communities who rely on these resources many of which are indigenous communities.Communities have traditionally used and contributed to management of river resources over many generations but are losing access as large-scale commercial exploitation accelerates. It is vital to recognize community ownership and stewardship of these resources to protect their livelihoods and the bio-diversity that these eco-systems sustain for current and future generations.
Check out the evaluation summary for more information.