Hi, My name is Sam and I am the founder of Spean Chivit (Life Bridge) Youth Resource Centre in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
In 2023 we need your help so we can continue to empower and support youth in Siem Reap. Our programs aim to bridge the gap between education and employment for young Cambodians, helping them gain skills and find pathways to better study and work opportunities. But they often go deeper than that, providing emotional support and a safe space to be themselves.
School students missed two years of schooling during Covid and many face challenges with the public school system, where class sizes are often 60+, there are no science labs and teachers of all subjects rely on reading text books and rote learning. It is the most tenacious and conscientious students who manage to come out of this system with great opportunities. For many, it is a struggle. We aim to provide a variety of support methods to help them excel in the next stages of their journey. But we can't do this without funds. We need help to grow our programs so we can have a significant impact on more youth.
Spean Chivit is a multi-purpose, grassroots, youth development centre. It provides essential life skills, critical thinking and creative development programs to Cambodian youth, aged 15-35, who experience significant socioeconomic or academic disadvantage. At the heart of our programs is our youth community centre, a vibrant, creative hub where we encourage positive social norms, gender equity, innovation and creativity aimed at strengthening leadership, learning and employment opportunities. We believe it is important for young people to have a safe space to grow, learn and socialise.
Every day youth come to the centre to read books, study and play games. It gives them a safe place to hang out. Young people who go to English class, but don't have books to read, progress slowly. They know the rules of English but not how the language really works. Our library has helped many propel their language skills, which will in turn help them at university as most resources are in English, not Khmer. It will also help them to get better jobs as Siem Reap is a tourist town where English is important. Playing games like Mastermind, Monopoly or Azul helps them think critically, analytically and strategically. Our guest speaker series has introduced them to new ideas and job possibilities for their futures.
For three years I have been trying to do it all, but that's no longer viable. To grow there needs to be a Cambodian team to help lead activities, develop peer-led programs and expand our capacity to create change and make more impact. We need Cambodians to be at the forefront to greet visitors and provide insight and support. We need resources that young people can access. These include books, games, materials for creative stimulation, digital resources and more. It's not sexy, but we also need to be able to pay rent, so we have a home for these programs.
I need support so I can focus on developing more programs and building relations nationally and internationally to give Cambodian youth more opportunities.
Join us and you will be part of the change. You can help us do great things and in turn, help Cambodian youth achieve bigger goals.