Our Projects in Cambodia
About the situation in Cambodia:
The daily major task of a child living in Cambodia is based on surviving war and its remains like landmines which still cripples many victims. Many children live with their parents in starvation or got orphaned through the violence of war. Abandoned children become street children and this confronts them with all sorts of abuses like sex trade. Cambodia has the highest HIV rate in Asia.
Kids-unlimited-Trust project 1
Vocational Training Center Computer literacy
The challenge: kids, especially street living kids, not only lack schooling and social skills but even after basic schooling do not find any income earning employment or jobs. Vocational Training aims to link training to effective, viable income generation opportunities.
Our local partner M’Lop Tapang operates two vocational training centers in Sihanoukville. They offer young men and women (age 15+) the opportunity to learn a skill that will enable them to support themselves and their families in the future. Kids-unlimited-Trust finances the expansion of the training centers to equip these young people with life skills including Khmer and English language, health and drug awareness and basic economies before they enter the work force. Thus they are able to find and maintain employment in an increasingly competitive work force.
Kids-unlimited-Trust supported the expansion of the M’Lop Tapang operated Youth Training Centers. They now offer more young people the opportunity to learn computer literacy, motorbike repair, welding, wiring and screen printing.
We now offer the following skills training: computer literacy, motorbike and small engine repair, sewing and embroidery, cookery and hospitality, welding, wiring and electrics, screen printing, massage and beauty.
Students learn under the guidance of a skilled trainer and must complete the course before beginning a job placement. Once a student is confident in his abilities and has completed the required training, M’Lop Tapang assists with a work placement witn a business in the community. Students are monitored on a regular basis by his/her social worker.
Kids-unlimited-Trust has supported the building of classrooms, the purchase of equipment for the computer literacy training and a sports ground. We continously support equipment needs and other running costs of the vocational center.
Kids-unlimited-Trust project 2
Back to school Program/Bridging Classes
The challenge: kids who never attended school do not fit in later due to age and embarrassement. Especially street living kids have to be individually supported and carefully lead back into a school attendance for which they are ill prepared and unfit to integrate into without special training.
One of M’Lop Tapang’s most important objectives is to reintegrate children into the public school system. Being able to read and write Khmer is vital in terms of providing future job opportunities and ultimately making these children role models for future generations of young people in Cambodia.
Although the cost of sending a child to school is only $25 a year, many families do not earn enough to cover food, clothing and basic shelter, let alone education fees. The Back-to-School-program targets children who are unable to attend school purely because of financial reasons. With Kids-unlimited-Trust funding school uniforms, books and supplies are provided to students at the start of each school semester. We also provide transportation to school for those who do not live within walking distance.
M’Lop Tapang’s team with support from Kids-unlimited-Trust follows up regularly with teachers to ensure children are attending class, and meets with families to help resolve problems impeding a child from going to school – whether it is offering counselling and group therapy for addictions, engaging a mother in our Home-based production program or offering the services of a Baby Care program, so that a child does not have to remain at home to care for a younger brother or sister.
Our Partner: M’Lop Tapang
The Tapang tree, also known as the ‘umbrella’ tree, provides shelter from the elements. M’Lop means shade or protection in the Khmer language. Under such tree in Sihanoukville in Cambodia street kids regularly slept and were the first to get help in reintegration but also protection from the founders of Mloptapang e.g. Maggie Eno.
M’Lop Tapang (MT) works with street working and living children and families in Sihanoukville, Cambodia providing access to education, protection from all forms of abuse, medical care, emergency assistance, counselling and income generation opportunities. MT opened it’s doors in 2003 to provide assistance to a handful of local children; we currently work with over 2500 children and 800 families at nine specialised centers in Sihanoukville.
Since 2006, MT has assisted over 1600 young people through our various Education programs. The program focuses on creative teaching practices to engage children in learning. Many children have never attended school and receive little encouragement from home to get an education. Often their parents did not have the opportunity to go to school and therefore do not appreciate the value of education.
We offer several education services to cater to the realities of the young people we serve. Our objective is to allow children to learn in a way that meets individual needs as opposed to conforming to a structured curriculum. We work with young people who are focused on attending university; who are not interested in formal education but would like to learn a skilled trade; children who are unable to attend class for more than a few hours a week; and children with learning disabilities and special needs. Our curriculum and teachers need to be flexible and able to accommodate the needs of all of our students.
Education based programs currently offered at MT include: Back to School, Bridging Program (Non Formal Education), Mobile Library, Community Education Centers, Special Needs, Vocational Training & Income Generation.
For more information about the local partner M’Lop Tapang visit the website: www.mloptapang.org