Monday, 30 November 2009

New Education Projects - A Personal View

The following report was received from a great supporter of CamKids from Australia, Andrew Gait, giving a a personal insight into two new education initiatives, being funded by CamKids:

My first involvement with CamKids was to take a Hills Hoist (washing line) to the Kais Village Orphanage and install it there. My son Nick lives in Sihnoukville and I’d asked the sister of one of the CamKids Trustees if there was anything I could take out to Cambodia for the charity, when I visited him in Cambodia. While I was at Kais I helped out in the orphanage school. It felt really good so I made the decision to get involved. It was that easy.

Since then I’ve been back to Cambodia several times to visit Nick and his new family. Every time I bring things over from Australia for the charity and I’ve spent time teaching at the Kais Orphanage and at the Rumdoul Thmei School, funded by CamKids.

On my last visit Dom and Benita Sharpe, who work tirelessly for CamKids, introduced me to Drew McDowell and I became involved, along with some with friends and colleagues in Tasmania, with financially supporting the Boeung Kok School and Community Centre project in Lakeside Phonm Penh. In a matter of weeks what was once an almost derelict building had been transformed into a vibrant school and community centre. The building was repainted, lights and fans fitted and student desks and a whiteboard installed. Almost 200 students attend the school daily and the building is being used constantly by the local community for a myriad of purposes. Every cent we send to CamKids goes directly into the school and centre and we are all kept up to date with what is happening by emails and photos supplied by CamKids and Drew.

I was also fortunate to be able to spend time working with teachers in the Takeo area, where CamKids supports a number of village schools. At the moment colleagues in Tasmania and myself are putting together an English As A Second Language resource for Khmer teachers. I hope to present this resource to the teachers in March next year. I will be working closely with the local CamKids Educational Co-ordinator (Ken) in translating and presenting the resource for teachers in the area.

I have felt privileged to have been allowed to play a small part in expanding the skills of the Cambodian educators and helping to developing their infrastructures with CamKids. It’s a small thing to do and I would recommend to anyone else visiting Cambodia to try it, the rewards are huge.

Andrew Gait, CamKids Supporter

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