In May 2017 land which had been bought with the help of Malaysian donors for the development of Cambodians through IofC was sold to the Catholic church in Battambang in Cambodia. Circumstances in Cambodia seemed to be pointing us to partner with Son Soubert's orphanage in Battambang.
On 5 March 2018, Sith Hong Eang, and Julie Tan met with Chum Veuk, Executive Director of Khmer Foundation for Justice, Peace and Development (which runs the Peaceful Children's Home 2 in Battambang, among other programmes) and shook hands on an initial partnership of five years. Our joint project will be called 'Apsara I Care' (AIC). The plan is to launch Apsara I Care on 15 February 2019.
Two resourceful volunteers are needed for six to 12 months (and ongoing), starting from September 2018, based at the revamped Peaceful Children's Home in Battambang. There will be an interview of potential volunteers with Julie Tan via skype. The volunteers will need to raise their own fares but food and accommodation will be provided, with expenses being raised jointly in faith! The volunteers will be responsible for contacting local NGOs, the church and universities to meet and invite people for our training programmes as well as setting up a data system so that future volunteers can invite people for the programmes. Once the training is underway they would also be responsible in caring for the trainer and participants.
- AIC will have 10 official training programmes in a year catering to answering the needs of Cambodian society (with the exception of Khmer New Year in April, and Pechumben - All Souls Day in Sept/Oct - because of long public holidays).
- Each official training can be facilitated by local or overseas trainers. We are hoping for training to be given pro bono. All expenses for trainers will be covered.
- Training will be held every middle of the month beginning on a Friday evening and ending by Sunday lunch.
- We expect corporate participation to help cover expenses. Other participants can just pay to cover cost of food and stay or PAYBAY (Pay As Your Budget Allows You).
- Our participants will be sourced from Cambodian IofC seniors and their colleagues/friends, NGO's, Universities, the Catholic church (Bishop Kike), etc.
- Guest house on site (donated by Canadian friends) can accommodate 20 people. Other participants can be accommodated in Battambang town.
- Training room is upstairs of the main building on site. It can take in about 20-30 people, more if seating is on the floor.
- A two-storey dormitory (house) has been given for us to renovate and use for our volunteers, trainers, etc.
Photos: Chum Veuk