For nearly three years, Malaysian artist Pei Yeou Bradley (aka Honey Khor) has attempted to raise funds to support children in education, in Siem reap, Cambodia. To date she has arranged sponsorship for fifty children to be able to attend the Thai Zo school. It is an impressive feat. However, when the children reach an age where they are strong enough to work, their families withdraw them from school.
It is a sad fact that many impoverished Cambodian families need the assistance of their children. Without this help the families slip even more in poverty. Many children attend school at the age of nine, and leave to help their families at the age of fourteen. They do not return to education.
Many charities now exist, in Cambodia, to aid street children and children who have been orphaned. There is little help, however, for the families who are just managing. It is the children of these families who have to sacrifice their futures through renouncing their right to education. A way must be found to support either the poorer families or to be able to support the children in school for longer.
Children leaving school so early not only denies them a proper education, but it holds Cambodian society back. Cambodia needs all the educated people it can get to help build a future which is not reliant on outside NGO support.
Pei Yeou does what she can. It is little enough, though she has raised the number of sponsored children from thirty-nine to fifty over the last year, it is still a very small drop in a very large ocean. This project needs all the support it can get - money and volunteers able to devote their time and energies to help build a better future for Cambodia’s needy children.