Saturday, 22 December 2012

Winter 2012 Newsletter


Up to now, all CamKids Newsletters have been written by the trustees, but we thought it was time for us to take a back seat and for you to hear from some of the Cambodians and volunteers working hard for CamKids and the children of Cambodia.  CamKids continues to expand its reach to help more and more disadvantaged children, and the testimonies in our Winter newsletter are written by people helping CamKids to help Cambodians to help themselves.

To access the Newsletter, please click This Link or Contact Us and we will send you a copy by e-mail.

THANK YOU for your loyalty, trust and support. From CamKids, and all the children we are able to help support through your ongoing generosity, we wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Safe and Happy New Year.

The CamKids Trustees

Monday, 17 December 2012

EYC Medical Program

Camkids funding medical care for Phnom Penh’s urban poor

As part of the ongoing support from CamKids to Empowering Youth in Cambodia (EYC), funds are provided to cover the medical expenses for EYC’s 4 schools in poor communities, otherwise known as slums (i.e. residents do not hold land titles). Students in the schools are provided a basic but holistic set of health services including regular health and hygiene training, weekly medical clinics at each school, referrals for serious cases that can’t be treated in the clinics and dental care. Additionally, everyone in the community receive health services including family planning training and long term birth control, medical treatment and de-worming treatment every 6 months. 

EYC started providing education and leadership development for young people in 2006. The services made a difference and are still much appreciated by the community, but the founder Drew McDowell was constantly confronted with illnesses in the students and their families. For EYC’s first 3 years they were unable to do much beyond taking kids with serious problems to a clinic or hospital, as well as some to a private dentist. “Kids were constantly getting sick, and we weren’t doing much to address it. Our team was good at inspiring and training young people, but when people got sick, and sometimes it was serious, we felt pretty helpless” said Drew. 

As the medical NGO One-2-One started to partner with EYC, they were able to provide a whole new level of support for students and their families. Not surprisingly, the costs to provide health services started to rise, and EYC could not sustain the program if not for the support from CamKids. Once a monthly budget was established, the team in EYC was able to work to support the health programs, establish partnerships, train volunteers from the communities, and the results were impressive. So impressive, it is hard to summarize or understand without seeing it firsthand; sick people being treated, cavities being filled (smiles returned), behaviors changed and hygiene improved.  A new generation that understands reproductive health, woman in control of their bodies and real care being shown to people who are in a tough situation. Each week there is a line of people waiting to see the medical team.  There are tuk tuks full of kids going to the dentist and there are trained young people on the ground to educate and help in all kinds of situations. 

From October 2011 to September 2012 EYC accomplished the following, thanks to the support from CamKids:

2,515 Patient-visits with a doctor. 
1,152 Patient-visits to a dentist. 
73 Women received long term birth control (IUD or implant). 

While the road to improving the health of a community is not an easy one, these results along with a continued health education message will affect long term changes in the communities EYC works with.

Monday, 10 December 2012

NFO Update

The following report and slideshow has just been received from one of the orphanages which CamKids has been supporting for a number of years:

NFO has had a year of great developments, we have not only had many upgrades and maintenance projects take place at the children’s home, but we have also seen an expansion of our community project and village schools too. Thanks to many volunteers, school groups and international organisations such as CamKids, we have seen an extension of our farm, teaching the children about sustainable practices and were able to complete much needed maintenance work on one of our classrooms, the children’s bathrooms and the kitchen. Other important construction projects also took place such as a dance room and a rice store shed and a new playground area. 

The children have also enjoyed a number of excursions; the most exiting of the year was to Phnom Penh for the CamKids cup, in which our talented football stars took first place. The children also visited Kep and Sihanoukville while all the children who have recently turned sixteen went on the annual trip to Angkor Watt. Our volunteers have thoroughly enjoyed their stay at NFO and have bought much benefit to the youth in which we serve, as expressed by a previous volunteer. 

“I feel very grateful and have had a humbling experience to have taught the kids at the orphanage and being able to play some outdoor games with them, teaching English to Monks at the Pagoda and help out at Ben Mao rural School whilst my stay at Takeo. I've also had some time to see other parts of Cambodia and had really cherished every moment of it. You can sure hope to visit a town full of lovely, local people, local traditional markets and many exotic fruits” Tania - June 2012, Student

We have also seen the expansion of our community projects and have extended not only our village school program with the building of a new school, but we now provide free English classes to the local monks and police and are also working with the Takeo provincial hospital on a blood donation program, proving desperately needed blood to those in need. 

NFO have been supported by CamKids for a number of years now through the provision of food for the children, the teachers' salaries and materials for all of our village schools, the building of our vocational training centre and the funding of our Tuk Tuks and other vehicles. Our children are very grateful for the assistance that CamKids provides as you can see by some of the testimonials of our children, such as this short story by Soklina.

"My names is Sok Lina, I am 12 years old, I have lived at NFO for four years. When I grow up I want to be a doctor. I like NFO because they help me think of my future. I have a lot of friends in NFO, they are so friendly with me, and other children too. At free time we study English with the volunteers in the classroom CamKids made for us. We study Khmer at school with our Khmer teacher. We eat breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. We sometime go to the beach and the mountains, we are happy in NFO." Sok Lina - October 2012

Friday, 23 November 2012

SEAL Cambodia Update

Cambodian children have one of the highest dental decay rates around the world. In a remarkable attempt to combat this, CamKids and the Global Child Dental Fund (GCDF) with the Cambodia Ministry of Health and Ministry of Education, have partnered to treat 60,000 grade 2 school children initially in Phnom Penh, over the next three years through the SEAL Cambodia program. This is the program’s first year in operation. The program aims to provide protective “fissure sealants” for the permanent molar teeth of Cambodian children. The treatment is very effective at preventing decay by protecting the chewing surfaces and keeping out germs and food, which if left in the pits and fissures, lead to decay.  The program is huge and logistically complex. It needs a large number of staff to achieve the demanding goals, with International volunteers with local Khmer staff working side by side.

We want to share with you a story about a special girl named Phally. Phally is the leader for the One-2-One CAMBODIA Smile Angel dental team (all girl dental team), her team is one of many that have been busy implementing SEAL Cambodia.  Phally, has been working for One-2-One Cambodia (a partner of CamKids and GCDF) since its foundation seven years ago. She leads a team of three who travel to different schools to provide sealants for the targeted kids. Working with children and preventing pain and infection from tooth decay through SEAL Cambodia is a great joy and privilege for Phally, who like many of the kids she treats, grew up in an orphanage.

Throughout her time with One-2-One, Phally has worked on a variety of children’s’ dental programs, Many of the children have never received dental treatment before so her empathy, experience and patience pave the way to successful engagement with them. Since this is such a new experience for the children, she and her team make every effort to ensure the entire visit a fun and pleasant one. Before any sealant is applied Phally and her team provide basic oral health education, teaching kids how to correctly brush their teeth, and which sugary foods and drinks they should avoid. Teaching the children is one of the favourite parts of Phally’s role as she knows that by showing children how to take better care of their teeth, they will have a healthier and happier future.

Phally and the SEAL team would like to thank CamKids and GCDF for their support of SEAL Cambodia, without which the program would be impossible. After working with kids for so many years, Phally has a sympathetic understanding of what happens to kids that have unsealed teeth and the large number of decayed teeth that it will eventually lead to. The children treated in this program have an average of 8-10 decayed primary (baby) teeth – which is why this sealant program to protect the new permanent teeth is so important. With SEAL Cambodia in place Phally looks forward to better dental health for thousands of children across Cambodia and is immensely grateful that she gets to work with Camkids and GCDF on such a great program.

We invite you to join Phally and her team in this fantastic journey of SEAL Cambodia.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

International University Dental Clinic

CamKids funds the cost for orphanages and other NGOs to take children to the International University (IU) Dental Clinic, to receive basic dental treatment. The treatment is provided by dental students under the supervision of senior dentists.  For the past three months, only children who actually needed some treatment were brought to the clinic.  A small team of dental students and a dentist were also sent to the orphanage or organization first, to screen the children - so that not all children needed to go to IU.  Dental health education and tooth brushing instruction was also given at the organisations and tooth brushes were given to the children who did not need  to go to the clinic. 

Treatment provided at IU includes: relief from pain and infection (by doing extractions and in some cases basic root canal treatment); prevention (sealing the molar teeth and applying fluoride to prevent decay; restorations (in permanent teeth and also some primary teeth in order to maintain the space for the adult teeth to come through); dental health education (using a dental tooth model and a flip chart to demonstrate correct oral hygiene); and fluoride vanish to strengthen the teeth. In the time we have been running this program, we have seen a great improvement in the oral health of the children

Below is a personal story from one of the children, who goes to school at the Who Will Children's Village school, which was also built by CamKids.
Sreynich’s story: 
My name is Sreynich. I am 11 years old. I am from Kompong Trolarge district, Kompong Chhnang province. I have a young sister and we live with our grandparents because our parents were divorced when I was in grade one. Now I am in grade five and am the number one student in my class. I want to be an English teacher in the future. Everyday I go to study English at the ‘Who Will’ organization because they are near my house and lessons are free. My teeth looked so bad and I was shy to talk to other people or my friends. When I looked in the mirror it made me sad to see my front teeth. Today my teacher brought me to the clinic to get my teeth fixed. I was so happy when they finished the treatment as it looks much better than before. I would like to say thank you to the dentist and to CamKids for treating my teeth and giving me some toothpaste and a toothbrush.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Who WIll Children's Village Update

We would like to share the  following report and photos from one of the directors of Who Will, with our donors and supporters:

The past year has been as busy as usual and with the completion of our two new houses, we now have what looks more like a village. We have excavated a new pond and used the soil to raise the level of the land in the middle of the six houses and so reduce the risk of flooding.

We plan to construct a gazebo in December to provide the children with another quiet area where they can read, play or just relax away from the more public areas of our village. We are also planning a new market garden to provide sufficient vegetables for our own needs and also have some to sell in the local market. Tree planting projects are also underway, to provide extra nutrition for the children, as well as much needed shade.

One of our children, Noun Dalin, was the first Gifted Child chosen by the newly set up Liger Foundation, and she left us at the beginning of August. She will be educated to international standards up to university entrance level, and will then be sponsored through tertiary education in a university of Liger’s choosing that is suitable to her abilities and chosen vocation. Dalin will return to the Who Will Village for all school holidays, as she has chosen to make it her home. 

We have had a steady stream of international volunteers at the village. Many of them have come through CamKids, and having one of the trustees helping coordinate the volunteer program has been really helpful in establishing this part of the village life. The work done by the volunteers has ensured that the standard of English among our children improves continually. Apart from teaching English, our volunteers have encouraged our children in sports such as soccer, volleyball and badminton. They have also taught them to play the guitar and ukulele, sing and learn craft skills. We are just completing a new volunteer house on site, and this will make the lives of future volunteers easier, as they will no longer be faced with a three kilometre cycle ride to and from the village twice a day. It will also allow the high school children to have English classes after school in the late afternoon since they are at government school all day now.

In addition to our 40 resident children, we also provide free English language classes to around 35 children from the surrounding villages as a part of our policy to integrate with the local population.

Towards the end of 2011, six of our children took part in the 17 kilometre cycle race section of the Angkor Wat Challenge where the boys took 1st, 2nd and 3rd places and the girls 2nd, 3rd and 4th in their group. This year we hope to have a team of 12 children, and they have opted to go for the 30 kilometre race this time.

As well as continuing with ongoing support of the village costs, mainly funded through a very successful child sponsorship program, CamKids also paid for a Christmas party last year, and two trips to the water park in Phnom Penh for the children and the staff. We continue to receive free dental treatment at the IU dental hospital thanks to CamKids as they fund free care there for organisations like Who Will, who can’t afford it. 

Our children took part in The CamKids QB soccer tournament in June this year. It involved other Children’s Centres also supported by CamKids from different provinces, and was a huge success. In fact Jakamo Sharpe, the son of 2 of the CamKids Trustees, chose to play in the Who Will team and we were delighted with third place having never played a tournament before!

Friday, 5 October 2012

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Chbar Chros Community School reopens

Yesterday Chbar Chris school opened again after the holidays. When we first opened the school in March we had 72 children registered. We now have 205 children registered for 2 kindergarten classes, grades 1, 2 and 3.

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Who WIll Music Lessons

CamKids friends and supporters, Caryn and her daughters, Annie and Katie, returned to Who Will where they volunteered last year. They brought with them several guitars and ukeleles, together with laminated song and chord sheets and are spending a few days teaching them new songs.

The village children, who attend the school at Who Will, also joined in. It was fantastic, if a little surreal, to hear a room full of Cambodian children singing Mama Mia at the tops of their voices!

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Banteay Sleak and Ptesh Leu Teak Slum Communities

During our recent visit to Cambodia, we paid a visit to the very poor slum community of Banteay Sleak, where we fund a weekly clinic operated by our partner organisation One-2-One Cambodia for 250 families.

This was our second visit and there have been huge improvements to the health of the children and adults since I was here in March. We were then taken to an even poorer community the "Village above water".

Words and pictures cannot adequately describe the living conditions which this community have to endure. The black foetid water runs right under their houses and the smell is the worse we have encountered in 30 years of travelling throughout Asia! We are currently assessing the community of 180 families and will be starting a weekly medical clinic here as well, next month.

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Final Places for the 2013 Brighton Marathon

CamKids has been offered some additional places for the 2013 Brighton Marathon. Public places have already sold out and very few charity places are still available. The event will take place on Sunday 14th April 2013.

The minimum sponsorship amount is £500 per runner and we already have a number of runners signed up for the event. As an example of how far this money will go, £500 will pay for the running costs of one of our rural schools for a year.

Participants will receive a CamKids T-shirt, Running Vest and Charity Wristbands and we will help you set up a fundraising page on JustGiving, to make collecting sponsorship money easy.

There are a limited number of places and we have a short deadline to confirm the places with the organisers. If you are interested, please email: by Sunday 30 September.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Gateways School supports CamKids

Gateways School near Leeds (@gatewaysschool) recently held a Hawaiian Luau Dance Benefit in aid of CamKids and the evening raised over £800 for the charity. The event, which was organised by a group of Year 9 pupils, included dance and music performances by girls from Year 4 upwards and also encouraged audience participation in a hula hooping competition and other games. The whole year group had been very busy in the art department making a cocktail shack and various other colourful Hawaiian-themed decorations, including surfboards, turtles, flip-flop garlands, flowers, etc. During the interval, parents and other guests enjoyed tropical cocktails and Hawaiian-themed snacks in the school grounds as the evening sun added to the holiday atmosphere.

The Luau was the latest in a succession of fundraising activities which have raised a total of over £4,400 for CamKids over the course of the last school year. The whole school has been involved in these fundraising activities ranging from cake sales to a Million Pound Drop Gameshow, from younger pupils setting up their own enterprises selling Christmas-themed products to Zumba classes and non-uniform days. A member of staff ran a marathon to raise funds and a Year 7 pupil walked the Three Peaks, as well as asking her birthday party guests to forgo the usual party bags so that she could donate the money to CamKids instead.

The school chose CamKids as their charity of the year to coincide with an expedition to Cambodia which older pupils completed in July. Throughout the year the work of CamKids was highlighted in school assemblies to enable pupils to better understand the support the charity gives to children in Cambodia.

The Trustees of CamKids would like to send a huge Thank You, on behalf of all of the Cambodian children who benefit from our projects, to all of the children, staff and parents of Gateways School for their wonderful fundraising efforts throughout the year. You have made a difference to so many lives through your generosity and hard work.

Friday, 3 August 2012

EYC Lakeside School

The Lakeside School is a house that has been converted to a school / community centre which brings education and health programs to children and young people in a slum district in Phnom Penh.

Run by Empowering Youth in Cambodia and funded fully by CamKids, the results of this program are clearly having a positive effective on the young people's future prospects and are a daily source of joy. The kids really enjoy going to class and students are regularly rewarded with fun activities. Outside of school, living conditions are tough, with families living in run-down shanty houses where drinking and gambling lead to children being neglected, while inside the school they are cheerful and the staff and volunteers provide positive influences.

Lakeside's programs include free English lessons, medical &, dental, access to the new library, community organising, as well as weekend activities including leadership development, dancing, yoga, and various field trips.

Lakeside School has 120 students attending every day and has an excellent network of supporting partners, including CamKids donors, committed Cambodian staff, international and local volunteers and a student team leader group which volunteers and runs much of the operation of the school.

Monday, 30 July 2012

CamKids Summer 2012 Newsletter

In the West we often take for granted our opportunities to play and get involved in sport. Sport has universal appeal and anywhere you throw a ball, you will soon find children playing with it. Cambodians love sport, but the opportunities for many children are extremely limited, especially the opportunity to take part in some sort of organized competition.

The benefits of sport are of course well documented and wide reaching, ranging from physical development and the endorphins produced through exercise, to life skills of dealing with success and failure, teamwork and communication.

Sport fits neatly into our MEND (Medical, Education, Nutrition, Development) Initiative, under the Development banner and most of this Newsletter is dedicated to showing how many children are benefitting from "Sport & Fitness With CamKids".

To access the Newsletter, please click Here or Contact Us and we will send you a copy by e-mail. If you sign up to our Newsletter below, you will receive future copies by e-mail every 6 months (your details will not be used for commercial or any other purpose).

Thank you once again to all of our donors and supporters, without whom none of this would have been possible. If you would like to find out how to support our work, please Contact Us.

The CamKids Trustees

Subscribe To CamKids' Twice Yearly Email Newsletter

Email Marketing
by VerticalResponse

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Thames Path Challenge - Places still available

Places are still available for the Thames Path Challenge on 29/30th September, which starts close to Putney Bridge and follows the unique Thames Path National Trail. Take on the epic endurance walk against the clock on the 100km route to Henley and attempt to complete the challenge within 24hrs – or take on the 50km option with a target time of under 12hrs.

Be part of the challenge which will see hundreds of walkers attempt the course and fundraise for CamKids and other charities. Sign up in teams of friends, colleagues or join as an individual and meet fellow trekkers along the way. It will be a weekend to remember!

Challenge Details:
  • The ultimate 100km challenge - target time under 24hrs!
  • 50km daylight challenge - target of 12hrs!
  • Assemble your own team - tackle the course together
  • Join as an individual - and we'll support you all the way!
  • Replenishment checkpoints along the way
  • Hot food stops @ 50km, 75km, and 100km
  • Fully supported with pace walkers, medics, physios
  • Participant area with training and fundraising resource
  • 50km walk - £50 registration fee + £200 minimum sponsorship
  • 100km walk - £75 to register + £300 minimum sponsorship
Full details of the challenge can be found HERE or email us for more information.

If you would like to take up the challenge and raise money for CamKids, please follow THIS LINK. Collecting your sponsorship money is easy, by setting up your own JustGiving Page HERE.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Krousar Thmey Centres for Deaf and Blind Children

Children the world over are gorgeous - and none more so than the deaf and blind children of Krousar Thmey. There are 16 Krousar Thmey Centers throughout Cambodia. The One-2-One / CamKids mobile dental team visits these underserved centres to provide much needed dental treatment to the children, most of whom have never seen a dentist. For some, even brushing their teeth is a new experience.

On our most recent visit to the Krousar Thmey School in Battambang Province, our team was most warmly welcomed by the staff and children. Shyness soon gave way to curiosity and excited chatter as they flashed huge smiles, crowded around, and were eager to help in what ever way they could.

Over the course of 5 days, the dental team, composed of overseas dental volunteers and local dental professionals, checked many and treated 196 Krousar Thmey children, completing over 300 fillings and pulling out over 100 rotten painful teeth! They also placed many fissure sealants and fluoride varnish, to help protect the teeth against further decay. Although the conditions were challenging, with temperatures well over 30 degrees, with so many children needing help, our team stepped up to the task, without complaint. The children were fantastic - sometimes waiting a long time for treatment, and very brave in the face of having several teeth treated at a single visit. Our team kept the children happy with big smiles and small rewards at the end - receiving a new toothbrush and a small tube of toothpaste in Cambodia is a big deal! The children were hugely grateful to our team, and most were happy to come back for a second and even a third visit.

It is not easy being a blind or a deaf child in Cambodia. Many are abandoned by their parents. The volunteers were constantly blown away by the children's courage, their resilience, and their gratefulness for the simple things most people in the western world take completely for granted. Despite some of the difficulties in communicating (how do you prepare someone who can't see or hear for an injection?), every day the children won the hearts of the volunteers through their acceptance, friendliness and courage. They even helped our volunteers learn some sign language and songs. Teaching children how to brush their teeth with their very first toothbrush was a rewarding experience - broad foamy smiles on their faces, laughter from their friends at their efforts, and seeing the obvious pride and gratefulness they all had at being given their very first toothbrush.

The deaf and blind children of Krousar Thmey School in Battambang City did not have any material things that they could give the dental team to thank them for their help, but they gave what they could, by putting on a special "Thank you" concert. Those who could sing, sang; those who could perform magic tricks wowed the audience with their magical prowess; and those with acrobatic skills said thanks by performing acrobatic tricks - leaving the dental team feeling like, in the end, they were the ones who had the most to be thankful for.

For more information or to support this project, please Email Us.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

SEAL Cambodia Launch

The Seal Cambodia project was formally launched on 6 July 2012 at a special event in Phnom Penh by Professor Raman Bedi (Chairman, Global Child Dental Fund and King’s College London), the project’s national coordinator Dr Callum Durward (Director, One-2-One Cambodia) and The Cambodian Children’s Charity – CamKids. The three year project will provide preventive care to 60,000 young children and will involve a large consortium of dental providers throughout the country. Professor Bedi said “We are excited about the programme which has brought together the Cambodian dental profession, international and local NGO’s, and the Ministries of Health and Education. Working together this project will transform the dental health of these children.”

With the approval and support of the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport (MOEYS), local dental groups are working with the Global Child Dental Fund (GCDFund) and The Cambodian Children’s Charity – CamKids to introduce the SEAL CAMBODIA project. These local groups include the Oral Health Office of the MOH, the Faculties of Dentistry, the Dental Nurses School, two local NGOs (One-2-One Cambodia and Cambodia World Family), the Cambodian Dental Association, and the School Health Department of the MOEYS.

Over the past 3 years, the MOEYS together with the MOH, with support from Colgate, have conducted a dental preventive program in 115 Phnom Penh primary schools. The program has consisted of dental health education and tooth brushing in schools. The outcome has been positive, however the level of dental decay in children is still extremely high. The present project will add fissure sealants to the existing school preventive program. The sealants will be applied to 6-7 year old children by dentists, dental nurses and dental students on-site at primary schools. A dental company (GC Asia) has donated enough material to be able to seal the teeth of 60,000 children over 3 years. The GCDFund and The Cambodian Children’s Charity – CamKids, have also provided the necessary financial support. Initially the program will be carried out in Phnom Penh and Kampong Cham. This type of program (which has been carried out in other countries) will be hugely beneficial to Cambodian children, and will prevent the extraction of many thousands of permanent teeth.

To launch the SEAL CAMBODIA project, a workshop (sponsored by GC Asia) was held at the Goldiana Hotel on Saturday 8 July. In attendance were representatives from the organizations supporting the Seal Cambodia project (including the Executive Director of the Global Child Dental Fund – Professor Raman Bedi), distinguished overseas lecturers from Thailand, Australia, Singapore, Indonesia and the UK, international delegates, as well as local dentists working for the MOH, MOEYS, the Dental Nurses School (in Kampong Cham), the two dental schools, hospitals and health centres, and local NGOs. On Monday 10 July a demonstration of the SEAL CAMBODIA project was held at Norodom Primary School.

Monday, 25 June 2012

2013 Brighton Marathon

Following on from the successful 2012 Brighton Marathon, we have been offered places for the 2013 event, which will also be televised for the first time.

This year we had 11 CamKids runners who raised almost £10,000 for the charity - a fantastic result. Next year's event will take place on Sunday 14th April 2013 and we are aiming for even more runners.

The minimum sponsorship amount is £500 per runner and we already have a number of people signed up for the event. As an example of how far this money will go, £500 will pay for the running costs of one of our rural schools for a year.

Participants will receive a CamKids T-shirt, Running Vest and Charity Wristbands and will have help in setting up a fundraising page on JustGiving, to make collecting sponsorship money easy.

We have a very short deadline to confirm the places with the organisers. If you are interested, please email: as soon as possible to confirm your place or express your interest, if you are not sure.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Great North Run 2012

The Bupa Great North Run, the world's biggest half marathon, has now grown to an unmissable experience for over 54,000 runners each year. The course takes in the iconic Tyne Bridge and finishes in the coastal town of South Shields. This year's event takes place on 16th September.

Live music, on course refreshment and thousands of cheering supporters will keep you motivated every step of the way. Many world class athletes have taken on the challenge including local international and winner of the very first race, Mike McLeod as well as some of the most famous names in distance running; Paula Radcliffe and Haile Gebrselassie.

If you are taking part in the event and would like to raise money for CamKids, you can sign up to our special Virgin Money Giving Page for the event or email us for more information.

Monday, 18 June 2012

CamKids / qb Football Tournament 2012

Under the blisteringly hot Phnom Penh skies, Cambodia showed the world on Sunday June 10th, how a football tournament should be run. The first annual CamKids/qb Football Tournament was held at the Old Olympic Stadium, and alongside some impressive footballing talent, the day was marked by irrepressible excitement, good humour and happiness.

On the day there was a total of six teams battling it out for glory. Teams from various provinces, Who Will Kompong Chnang, Empowering Youth in Cambodia (EYC) Phnom Penh, New Futures Organisation (NFO) Takeo, Hopeful Association for the Poor (HAP) Kompong Speu, were four of the teams and are all organizations supported by CamKids.

CamKids also invited PPSL, a team of ex pats and Cambodians who train and play every Saturday in Phnom Penh, and another well trained team, comprising of children from 6 different orphanages, represented qb on the day. Some of the players had never been to Phnom Penh before. Some of the players had never worn football boots before. But you wouldn’t have known, from the enthusiasm and spirit, how new this was for many of them.

The stadium looked wonderful, thanks to sponsors qb, the mobile phone company, who had printed hoardings to go around the pitch, adding to the air of professionalism that surrounded the event. Indeed, from a neutral, outsider’s perspective, the professionalism that permeated every facet of the tournament was incredibly impressive, not least because, as is always the case with a CamKids project, no one was being paid.

So it wasn’t just the hoardings, or the wonderful vivid team kits, also thanks to qb, that made the whole event seem so significant, but it was the labours of so many people that made the day such a delight. The referees and linesmen toiled in the thankless heat, the staff from The Eighty8 barbecued satay and cooked noodle salad for over three hundred players and spectators. But so much of the unsung work was done, as ever, by Dom and Benita, who organised every aspect of the day, from arranging sun hats and cold drinks, to Dom’s inspired commentary – the day would have run far less smoothly without their huge efforts.

On the pitch, the teams were surprisingly evenly matched, despite the disparity in experience, and in player size. The new kits looked magnificent, and the pride of the players in wearing them would have brought a lump to the throat of the most cynical football fan.

The Who Will team looked lively and guileful, but in the end NFO won the day, due in no small part to the enthusiasm of their coaching team. Even underdogs HAP acquitted themselves well, defending doggedly and attacking on the break like seasoned pros. The crowd was spirited, enthusiastic and very vocal, and, unlike other tournaments currently going on in Europe, there were no reports of hooliganism. Everyone was just thrilled to be there.

There has to be a winner, and in the end, a tense, hard fought final was won 2-0 by NFO over qb. 3rd and 4th was battled out between Who Will and PPSL, with Who Will the somewhat unexpected victors with another 2-0 scoreline. EYC took 5th over HAP, but only lost one game on the day and had the player of the tournament in their team, who has already had a mural dedicated to him on the wall where they train. HAP, although coming 6th on the day, had never played together before and the story of this team will definitely be the subject of a follow up article.

The point of the day was a simple one: for everyone to have fun, and there’s no doubt that they did. CamKids paid transport costs, not only to bring in the teams from each organisation, but a 50 strong crew, so all the children and carers from the centers could attend. This allowed a great day out for everyone and gave each team a support base and the whole event an amazing, positive and joyous atmosphere. The looks on the faces of the players as they got their medals at the end of the day, and were told they could keep their kit, was worth all the hard work and effort. It’s humbling to stop for a moment and see how the kids respond to something we’re so used to in the developed world, and it was humbling to watch the care and effort put in by everybody involved on Sunday. It was a terrific day, and one everyone should be thoroughly proud of. Roll on next year.

Monday, 11 June 2012

THAMES PATH CHALLENGE: Saturday 29 - Sunday 30 September 2012

2012 is an Olympic year for London, and we've an Olympic challenge for all. Starting close to Putney Bridge the Thames Path Challenge is an epic endurance walk against the clock following the unique Thames Path National Trail. Take on the ultimate Thames Path Challenge 100km route to Henley and attempt to complete the challenge within 24hrs – or take on the 50km option with a target time of under 12hrs.

Be part of the challenge which will see hundreds of walkers attempt the course and fundraise for CamKids and other charities. Sign up in teams of friends, colleagues or join as an individual and meet fellow trekkers along the way. It will be a weekend to remember!

Challenge Details:
  • The ultimate 100km challenge - target time under 24hrs!
  • 50km daylight challenge - target of 12hrs!
  • Assemble your own team - tackle the course together
  • Join as an individual - and we'll support you all the way!
  • Replenishment checkpoints along the way
  • Hot food stops @ 50km, 75km, and 100km
  • Fully supported with pace walkers, medics, physios
  • Participant area with training and fundraising resource
  • 50km walk - £50 registration fee + £200 minimum sponsorship
  • 100km walk - £75 to register + £300 minimum sponsorship
Full details of the challenge can be found HERE or email us for more information.

Registration is open until 31 July 2012 - plenty of time to don your trail shoes, plan your training, and start fundraising. If you would like to take up the challenge and raise money for CamKids, please follow THIS LINK. Collecting your sponsorship money is easy, by setting up your own JustGiving Page HERE.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Fundraising For CamKids

These days, raising money for charity doesn't need to involve rattling a can or trawling round your friends asking them for the £5 they promised you months ago. With online fundraising services, you only need to email, Tweet or post the details of your own personal fundraising site on Facebook and the rest is taken care of. These services charge a small fee, but they also reclaim the 28% in Gift Aid for us, which means that, in most cases, we receive around 120% of the amount donated (for UK taxpayers) and involves very little administration work for us.

CamKids has signed up to the popular JustGiving service, as well as Virgin Money Giving, BT's MyDonate and other popular services, where you can also make single or regular donations.

Our JustGiving Page will give you some ideas of possible events. In the past, CamKids supporters from all around the world have set up pages for the following events:

Kick Boxing Event
Bug Eating Competition
In Memory
Kilimanjaro Climbs
Beard Shaving
Cycling across the USA
Fun Runs

Some people also set up fundraising pages before or after a trip to Cambodia, to let their friends know what they are doing, how they have been affected by the country and how they can help the children. If you are thinking of travelling to Cambodia, we can agree on a specific project or programme which you money will fund, so that you can report back to your supporters on how the funds were spent. Remember, CamKids have absolutely no administration or overhead costs and so we can guarantee that 100% of the money you raise will go directly to helping the Cambodian children.

How about you - why not set up a fundraising page today? A few pounds from all of your friends could make a huge difference to the lives of the children who benefit from our programs. £1 will pay for the dental treatment for a child in a rural village, who would not have access to such treatment and can relive them from the pain of tooth decay and infection. If you can raise £450, this will allow us to run a rural school in Takeo for a year.

If you need any assistance, or would like some other fundraising target ideas, please email us.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Chbar Chros School Blessing

On 22 March, our new Community School at Chbar Chros, in Kampong Speu Province was officially opened and blessed by monks from the local monastery. This project is part of our MEND (Medical, Education, Nutrition, Development) initiative for the area and will shortly be followed by a pre-school facility and a medical centre. It was a truly memorable day for everyone concerned. We were treated to a series of dances performed by the talented children at HAP orphanage in the beautiful costumes which CamKids' donors funded, as well as 2 songs, specially composed by the children and their teacher in honour of the new school and CamKids and a number of speeches written by the children, the teacher and the elders of the village.

It was a wonderful day and we were delighted to be able to welcome our Patron, Al Murray, as well as Mark Augustyn and Adam Booker, who work tirelessly in supporting Al to raise large amounts of money for CamKids throughout the year. We were also really happy to be able to bring along a bus load of Cambodian and expatriate CamKids supporters from Phnom Penh. Enforcing the 'no drinking before the ceremony' rule on the bus was challenging, but the day went off without any hitches and Dom managed to keep everyone under control. The same cannot be said for the return journey!

On our way to the ceremony, we dropped in on a local government school, where teachers and pupils of Sorell school in Tasmania had raised money to purchase playground equipment for the school. Again, it was wonderful to be able to have long time CamKids supporter, Moya Sharpe, there for the ceremony, where we also donated 40Kg of children's clothes, organised by Gill Fryer in Victoria.

We were all very moved by the reception we received at both schools, the speeches from the local chiefs and elders of the community, the dancing and the songs sung by the children. At last the villagers at Chbar Chros have a school for their children - something that they have never had in this area, even before the Khmer Rouge took over in the mid-1970's. The look of pride on the faces of the elders of the village were all that was needed to assure us that they will continue to work in partnership with CamKids to make the school a success.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Banteay Sleak Community Medical Clinic

This clinic is a partnership between CamKids (which funds all of the costs), One-2-One (which provides the services) and the Community to improve the health status of the poor in this slum and to improve the general standard of health of the poor in this area. Moreover, it seeks active participation of the community, so that it can educate inform and empower the community to understand basic health issues and basic hygiene. CamKids and One-2-One established a similar clinic at Canalside over a year ago and the improvements in the health of the children and adults at that site has been extraordinary.

Banteay Sleak Community Clinic is set up on the road of 434 in the Chamkar Morn district of Phnom Penh. This slum community has 288 families from various locations around Cambodia. Most of people in this village have not had any education about health matters and most of them have no chance to go to school. Hygiene is extremely poor - the community doesn’t have enough lavatories because they don’t have enough money or any land to build them and only 20 to 30 families who can afford to use electricity. They live in a very poor condition with poor hygiene, contaminated spoiled food and no clean water. Most pregnant women don’t have antenatal care and give birth at home because they are so poor and don’t know where to go to check up on their health. Most of the adults work in labouring / construction or rubbish collection and recycling. Their daily income is $1.5 to 2.5 dollars per day £30-45 per month), to look after and feed their whole family.

Two teams carry out the Medical work – a medical and a nursing team. The medical clinic is divided into three stations - Triage station, Consultation station and Pharmacy station. Each station has its own tasks. The Triage station is the place for patient registration, measuring (weight, blood pressure, heart rate and respiratory rate) and finding out the main problems. At the Consultation station, the medical doctor or senior medical student starts to find and record the important facts such as history of presenting illness (HPI), Past Medical History (PMH), Medication , Allergy, Family History (FH), Social History(SH), Review of System(ROS), Physical Examination(PE), Clinical Diagnosis and Treatment. The Pharmacy station is responsible for providing the medication and instructions on how to take the prescribed medication, so that we can be sure that patient understand and can follow the advice.

The nursing team provides health education and much needed public health measures to the villagers and children. Managing many, many wounds which is a major part of life in the slum, when dwellers are working in bare foot. Injury and trauma is an every day life event as they are working in high risk area like construction sites and picking up and recycling rubbish.

Banteay Sleak Community Clinic started in April 2012. We see a lot of children and adults with many illnesses and wounds, along with skin problems like scabies and lice. Our team will continue to look for locations to set up the clinic so that when the rainy season comes, we will be able to continue our work. We are planning a MOBILE dental service for this community, to start on the 9th May. Once the clinic has been established for a few months, we intend to implement another program here, run as a partnership between One-2-One and CamKids, called Cambodia Smiles, so that mothers of young children under the age of 5 are targeted for special oral health education and training to improve oral health of the children as they grow.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Chbar Chros Community school

Work is progressing well on the new school at Chbar Chros and remains on schedule for the planned official opening later this month.

The school will provide Kindergarten, Grade 1 and Grade 2 education for an estimated 100 children who do not have regular access to education at the moment. It will be run as a Community School in accordance with the guidelines of the Ministry of Education.  CamKids has funded the cost of construction and will cover all of the running costs. In addition, CamKids is currently renovating a kindergarten, which will be opened for the nearby community of Raing Te at about the same time (pictures to follow).

It is planned to expand the use of the school building in Chbar Chros to offer opportunities to a larger number of people in the surrounding villages. CamKids has also secured funding and started to construct a medical centre on the site this month and also sent a mobile medical and dental team to this community in January, which was extremely successful. We are particularly encouraged by the fact that the villagers and their leaders see this as a collaborative project, which bodes well for the future.

The land for the buildings has been donated by the community and part of the preparatory work is being undertaken in association with local villagers, who are giving their time freely. Additional projects are planned for this community, to further improve the health, education and life chances for the whole community and we hope to use the knowledge and experience gained from this project to undertake similar projects at other poor rural communities in Cambodia.

STOP PRESS:  The official blessing of the school took place on 22 March 2012 and an update will be posted shortly.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

CamKids 2011 Annual Report & Accounts

The Trustees of CamKids - The Cambodian Children's Charity, are pleased to report that the Charity's Annual Report and Accounts for 2011 have been filed with the Charity Commission well ahead of schedule.

A copy of the report and accounts can be downloaded from HERE.

Please direct any questions about these accounts to CamKids Finance

Thursday, 23 February 2012

From Vision 2 Voice Concert in Aid of CamKids

From Vision 2 Voice and Special Guests are delighted to present a concert in aid of CamKids:
  • DATE: Saturday 10th March 2012
  • VENUE: Bedgrove Infant School, Ingram Ave, Bedgrove, Aylesbury, Bucks, HP21 9DJ
  • TIME: 7.00pm start. Finish by 9.30pm
  • DRESS CODE: Smart Casual
  • TICKETS: £20 each cash (£10 for 5 to 15 year olds, children under 5 free)
The concert will be compered by Jamie Hinde – Royal Shakespeare Company actor and West End Lead. It will be 2.5 hours of song and dance (with interval) featuring Rickmansworth Adult Choir, The Academy Choir and Soloists, Konflict dance troupe which can be seen on the hit TV show ‘Got To Dance’, David Mitchener’s Children’s Choir and a surprise special guest too.

To book your seat please email Megan on or call 07957 787399.