Village Focus International is registered as a 501(c)(3) organization in the United States and as a charitable organization in Hong Kong. In 2000, we became the first international organization to be founded in Laos, and began working in Cambodia in 2003. During this period, we have worked in hundreds of remote and vulnerable villages throughout both countries.
Our focus was, and remains, on enhancing local leadership development in an effort to bring about positive fundamental social change.
Despite our growth, we have remained true to our founding spirit: to emphasize and support local leadership,decision-making and ownership, in both Laos and Cambodia.
We are proud of our extraordinary Lao and Cambodian staff members, many of whom are acknowledged national leaders in the fields of human trafficking and land and natural resource rights. VFI’s annual budget has grown from USD125,000 in 2000 to approximately USD2 million for 2016. In 2015, our 75 staff members and 40+ volunteers served approximately 200,000 people, a dramatic increase from 15 villages and 4000 people in 2000.
Our very first project in Laos – then known as ‘Village Education in Southern Laos’ – is now a registered local NGO call Our Village Association, a feather in our cap as we seek to invest in local leaders to create global change.
Click the image to watch the video (3:06 min)
Our video tells the story, underlying the need for an integrated Village Focus approach to village development. Village life is interdependent, and land and natural resource rights and health directly impact food security and the social systems that protect the most vulnerable. Young women and girls are often the first to seek employment outside the village when land and food cannot support the family, and often end up trafficked and exploited.