Goutte d'eau – a child support network (GEcsn) is a non-political, non-religious Swiss NGO. It brings together local NGOs in Cambodia to improve the lives of vulnerable children, their families, and their communities. Its main objectives are to transfer knowledge, encourage knowledge sharing, and support effective project implementation and management, although it also provides financial support by connecting the NGOs with potential donors.
Goutte d’eau was first created as a foundation in 1996 by a group of young people who decided to assist the most vulnerable children of Cambodia after having discovered unsustainable living conditions during their trips to South-East Asia. The foundation first built up an NGO in Cambodia ‘Goutte d’eau Cambodia – Damnok Toek’ to assist street-children and fight child trafficking and other forms of child abuse. Many of the children welcomed in the centers were mentally and/or physically disabled. Because there were no structures to assist these children in Cambodia, Goutte d’eau decided in 2003 to open the Damnok Toek Handicap Center in Phnom Penh.
Addressing the fact that local NGOs are mostly competing to get funds from international organizations and therefore have difficulties working together on the ground, the funders of Goutte d’eau decided in 2003 to expand their work from ‘Goutte d’eau Cambodia - Damnok Toek’ to other Cambodian NGOs. This new part of Goutte d’eau was called Child Support Network (CSN) and its main objective was to make sure that its partners would communicate and address all problems rather than leave some aside because of a lack of coordination. CSN also made sure that Cambodian NGOs would determine the real needs of the children instead of following western funding themes.
Thanks to this expanded goal, Goutte d’eau extended its outreach and created a network of NGOs sharing the same mission and working together to efficiently address the current needs of children in Cambodia. In 2009, the members of Goutte d’eau and CSN decided to merge both organizations becoming Goutte d’eau – a child support network (GEcsn).