News & Stories
Lending a Helping Hand to Students in Cambodia
The tourism industry to Siem Reap, Cambodia was hit hard by the pandemic. Although Cambodia itself has a high vaccination rate and low infection rate, tourism from harder-hit countries slowed to a trickle, striking a devastating blow to owners and employees of businesses and industries that depend on the money they make from tourists to keep a roof over their families’ heads, keep food for their families on the table, and keep their children in school.
Pearl S. Buck International and Caring for Cambodia Partnership
Through partnership with the education-driven non-profit Caring for Cambodia, Pearl S. Buck International provides child sponsorship opportunities to children in Siem Reap looking to start and complete their educations as the key to a better life for themselves, their families, and their communities. Now that the key to a better life for themselves, their families, and their communities. Now that the pandemic is waning in many places, Caring for Cambodia staff and volunteers are slowly getting back on the ground in Siem Reap to provide hands-on help to the children there, who are in need of toothbrushes, school supplies, uniforms, and more. Schools reopened to students in January, and there are walls that need painting, paver blocks that need laying, and teachers that need training.
Students served by Caring for Cambodia, including those in the Pearl S. Buck International child sponsorship program, are thriving in Caring for Cambodia’s schools. Chivorn, a senior in high school, was one of five students from Siem Reap invited to participate in a special Ministry of Education program for 200 students from across Cambodia. After participating in this program, Chivorn was named by the ministry as the number two student across the country—the recognition rewards students who are not only leaders in the sessions but who also demonstrate they are good students and good citizens in their communities. After graduation, Chivorn plans to either become a teacher or study mathematics at university.
Educating the Future of Cambodia
This year, Caring for Cambodia also celebrated 19 years of helping children gain an education—what began as a desire to help one little girl has blossomed into 21 schools educating 7,000 students this year. Thanks to Caring for Cambodia staff and volunteers, and now the generosity of Pearl S. Buck International child sponsors and donors, the children in Siem Reap no longer are crowded into dilapidated one-room school buildings, no longer struggle to concentrate as they sit hungry and without basic supplies, no longer wait for teachers who only show up sporadically, no longer have to pay for school by begging at the temples. Schools with leaking thatched roofs and not enough desks have given way to concrete buildings filled with brightly colored walls, computer labs, and science classrooms. At Pearl S. Buck International we are thrilled to see this partnership with Caring for Cambodia flourish to the benefit of children in need there. Thank you to all our supporters who have made it possible for us to extend Pearl Buck’s cross-cultural and humanitarian legacy to even more children, families, and communities around the world.