First week in Cambodia and many projects to get stuck into. Our primary partner organisation we are assisting here in Battambang is Children’s Action for Development (CAD). Children’s Action for Development (CAD) is committed to providing free education to low-income children living in rural Battambang. Their main focus is to keep children in school and helping to provide them with the tools they need in order to succeed. All of the CAD students attend government school in the morning and then study the core subjects in the afternoon at the Center. The classes provided at CAD, therefore, are provided as “supplementary classes” to reinforce material taught at school and strengthen student confidence. A very earnest leader named Raki is the Director of CAD, and most certainly a high energy change maker here in Battambang.
We wake up on Day 1 of our 8 weeks in Battambang and it is absolutely sweltering. We barely slept. Bleary eyed we tuck into a quick breakfast of baguettes with bright red jam (!), and luke warm water. Off by 8am on our first TukTuk (or Remort) ride 15 minutes out to CAD1, the first of 4 children’s centres up and running. For Annie and the boys, it is a lifeskill project to show examples of using recycled materials to grow small vegetable gardens around the centre. We work alongside Cambodian volunteers to spray paint old tyres and hang them around the centre. Next we dig up the earth in the surrounding land, mix up with a small amount of potting mix and plant seeds in the tyres. This project sees us busy in the mornings repeating the job at each of the 4 centres and I am amazed at how keen Big O and Little Z are to help. The children love to come and help and watch in their playtime, eager to talk and play with the little Western blonde boys in their midst.