I am a UK (Welsh) citizen who left the UK to go travelling in 2015. My journey brought me to Cambodia, where I have resided in a small coastal village (Otres) for the last 18 months.
Since January 2018 I have been a volunteer teacher at Shine Cambodia - a non-profit NGO operating from the grounds of the local pagoda (Buddhist temple) here in Otres, Cambodia.
Shine Cambodia Incorporated is a not-for-profit charity, based in Otres, providing children and their families with an educational support centre offering school education, family support, social care, and health and wellbeing programs.
The impact of the Khmer Rouge regime, endemic corruption and limited human resources has resulted in the dispossession and dislocation of the Cambodian people from land and family.
This has caused the erosion of educational and social infrastructures, especially in the impoverished countryside, which has adversely affected the social and emotional wellbeing of families. Cambodia is also one of the most natural disaster-prone countries in Asia.
In rural Cambodia, a large number of families simply cannot afford to send their children to school and they are often left to roam the streets, sent to work on the land, collecting plastic from the beach and rubbish sites, or at home helping to raise their siblings.
Our outreach program reveals that very often, families are bereft of the most basic necessities such as clothes/footwear, rice and clean water in the household.
Shine Cambodia provides free education, from ages 5 to 16, and social support to the community, ensuring that when the children leave school they have career options to give their families a better life. An opportunity many of us take for granted.
Each child that grows up to succeed will become living proof that the future can be different to the past.
With scarce access to resources, we often use our own personal funds to provide essentials to ensure effective learning (pens, pencils, books, paper, etc.)
Unfortunately, I was in a near-fatal motorcycle accident in March 2018, from which I am still recovering from injuries sustained. This had a significant impact upon my own financial resources, which are now wearing thin.
I am currently working a minimum of two concurrent full-time jobs in addition to this role in order to ensure I can still support myself whilst giving all that I can to the families that benefit from Shine Cambodia. Unfortunately, this is not a sustainable model in the long-term.
Therefore, I turn to all those I know and love to assist me in whatever capacity is possible to assist me to continue on this mission to ensure the poorest families are not forgotten and left behind.
Together, we can make a real difference to the lives of hundreds, if not thousands.
Here is a costing breakdown of what it takes to support this mission:
$0.50 Feeds a child school lunch for a day.
$0.60 Educates a child for a day.
$2.50 Feeds a child school lunch for a week.
$3.00 Provides a child education for a week.
$11.00 Feeds a child school lunch for a month.
$13.00 Provides a child education for a month.
Whatever you can spare makes a real difference. 100% of the proceeds raised for Shine Cambodia goes directly into its non-profit operations.
Donations can also be received directly via: https://shinecambodia.org/