UN Women Cambodia

Sinet Seap with her former youth organization Youth Resource Development Programme and their volunteers. Photo: UN Women/Mariken B. Harbitz Read more

Cambodia is a country emerging from conflict. In the past decade some progress has been achieved through interventions by government, civil society and international agencies, but it remains one of the poorest countries in Asia Pacific region. Given this context, the challenges to gender equality in Cambodia remain those related to poverty, including maternal mortality, illiteracy, violence, trafficking and unsafe migration. Discriminatory attitudes and norms present further obstacles in achieving gender equality.

Although Cambodia ratified CEDAW in 1992, implementation has remained slow until recently. Since 2001, however, gender equality efforts have been gaining momentum and receiving national endorsement, beginning with efforts to engender the 2003-2005 National Poverty Reduction Strategy (NPRS). Currently, the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA) and the Cambodia National Council for Women (CNCW) make up the national machinery for the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. MoWA recently launched its 3rd Strategic Plan, Neary Rattanak III (2009-2013), focusing on economic empowerment of women, gender equality in education, legal protections, public health issues, including HIV/AIDS prevention and care, and women’s political participation. MoWA also prioritizes CEDAW implementation and mainstreaming gender equality into the general policy framework.


News and Updates

Equal Rights Begin at Home

19 May 2017

This week people all over the world are marking the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT). This is the day when the human rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, and Queer (LGBTIQ) persons are highlighted and diversity is celebrated. Here in Cambodia, IDAHOT is at the centre of a week of celebration and awareness-raising for LGBTIQ Pride 2017 under the theme I Am What I Am. Globally, “Families” are the focus for IDAHOT 2017. The family is... more

From where I stand: Sinet Seap

17 August 2016

I sold my gold earrings to pay for the first year of university in Phnom Penh. I come from a farmer’s family in rural Cambodia. Most of my friends stopped going to school at age 11. Only a handful of us made it to high school. One of my teachers said: ‘You shouldn’t study. You will always be busy with house chores.’ School... more

Cambodia strengthens its strategy to end the widespread violence against women

10 August 2016

The Cambodian Government has strengthened its national strategy to prevent violence against women, which experts say continues to be widespread in the country. The Government adopted its Second National Action Plan on Violence against Women in December 2014. The plan, which covers 2014-2018, focuses on primary prevention and aims to move the country beyond awareness raising to “learning by doing”. It pairs government... more

Changing how violence against women is reported

11 July 2016

UN Women Cambodia partnered up with its Media Compact, Cambodian Center for Independent Media (CCIM) to create awareness and share knowledge on violence against women in the media. Over the course of two days, journalists learned how to pen down ethical journalism that challenges stereotypes. “In the media, women are always depicted as victims, sometimes even with... more


Infographics: The GEWE Universe


The Sustainable Development Goals are the globally agreed goals guiding the new development agenda towards 2030. Gender is mainstreamed throughout the 17 SDGs while Goal 5 specifically calls on states to: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls... more

National Survey on Women's Health and Life Experiences in Cambodia. Cambodia Ministry of Women’s Affairs, 2015


Violence against women, in its many forms and manifestations, and across all settings, is a violation of human rights and fundamental freedoms. Violence against women takes place regardless of age, class, race and ethnicity, and impacts women across the world. This report looks at the proportion of women who ever had a partner, and if they ever in their lifetime have experienced physical, sexual and/or emotional violence. This is the first nationally representative, dedicated survey on intimate partner violence in Cambodia... more

Out from behind closed doors: A study on domestic workers in Cambodia


Domestic workers, most often women, remain hidden behind closed doors of private households and are shielded from the public view and attention. This can put them into a vulnerable position. Although stories have helped to create a stronger awareness for the public to the situation of domestic workers, there still has been a lack of hard data to inform the policy debate. This study is directed at filling the knowledge gaps regarding domestic work in Cambodia... more

Featured Story

Cambodian Youth on dialogue with Australian Ambassador for Women and Girls

UN Women Cambodia brought together 10 young Cambodian activists to meet with Australia’s Ambassador for Women and Girls, Ms. Natasha Stott Despoja, on her visit to Phnom Penh. Representing a range of different youth networks and organizations, the group discussed the work... More

Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step it up for gender equality!

On 27 September, the Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: A Commitment to Action. Governments have made concrete national commitments to ensure women and girls can reach their full potential by 2030. Among 80 Member States globally that have stepped it up, 19 are from Asia and the Pacific region... More

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Planet 50–50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality