I have just arrived back from a visit to Cambodia and would like to bring you up to date on some of the developments at our children’s education centre.
BACK TO SCHOOL
The children returned at the beginning of October after their 2 months school holidays.
They are all in great form and looking forward to the year ahead.
One of our new girls is Vet. She is 8 years old and comes from a large and destitute family.
She is able to attend our Centre thanks to a generous donor who will support her through her education. She is so proud of being a ‘school girl’. And is unrecognisable from the ragged little urchin who arrived on day one!
The children were no sooner back at school when another national holiday occurred – there are so many in the Cambodian calendar!
Bon Om Touk or the Cambodian Water Festival, is celebrated in November on the full moon. The festival lasts for three days and commemorates the end of the country’s rainy season, as well as the reversal of the flow of the Tonle Sap River. Festivities include boat races and concerts. We brought all the children up to Siem Reap to watch the boat races on the River – very noisy and exciting. Below some of the children in their new blue Opportunity Cambodia tee shirts.
At the end of the wet season some of our families decamp to Tonle Sap Lake to fish. They then dry the fish to provide protein for their diet during the dry season. Fish is a very important part of the menu at our Centre.
Families often take their children out of school when they move to the Lake but we are able to ensure that our students continue at school and are cared for while their relatives are away.
THANK YOU NRMA
The NRMA has presented us with 6 computers – a wonderful donation which included a technical expert to install the computers. Chris spent two days at our Centre making sure everything worked in our technically challenging environment!
We are thrilled with the outcome and the children were so grateful they performed several dances in Chris’s honour!
EXTRA CURRICULA ACTIVITIES
We have commenced our Inspiration and Motivation program, with our first speaker being Sokha Sam. Sokha is a Cambodian woman from a very simple rural village who has worked her way up from little education and a job as cleaner at a Siem Reap hotel, to an MBA and a job as Manager of the hotel. Her story is an inspiration to all the children but particularly to the girls who still face family pressures to leave school at primary level, if they go to school at all, to work in the home and to marry early.
Sporting facilities are non- existent in our local school and in the local commune. So we have started a program to teach the children soccer and volley ball, and we hope that in time they will be able to go to Siem Reap to compete with the city school teams.
Chris braves the Cambodian heat to do a little soccer training!
We are currently conducting a comprehensive survey of one of the critically impoverished communities where a number of our students live. The data we collect will form a sound basis for the community development work that we are in the process of undertaking in the community. The priority of course is clean drinking water and sanitation. We are also planning to enable some income earning opportunities particularly for the women.
We couldn’t support and educate so many poor children without your interest and support. They are terrific kids and deserve the opportunity they are getting.
A very big and heartfelt thank you to all our wonderful donors.
This Christmas please think about making a donation to our education program. We would love to enable more children to gain the very clear benefits of good health and education that our students receive.
Founder and Director
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