When walking around Phnom Penh's biggest slum, in front of the Russian embassy, I stumbled into Mr Pat Noun, the Director of the Cambodian Light Children Association (CLCA). He led me into a courtyard of shacks in the middle of the slum and showed me the orphanage and home for street children he runs. I spent the morning there, hearing about his project, the 147 children he cloths, feeds and provides shelter for. There is a small clasroom in the centre where the children learn Khmer and English. they also learn Apsara dancing and the older boys help out and do kick boxing. Unlike other charities there is no big NGO providing funds, no government support, no full time paid charity workers or snazzy offices. Just Pat, who used to be a Buddhist monk for many years and fed those suffering during the Cambodian war, some other volunteers, and the children.
I had the privilege to take photos of the centre and the children all morning. They hoped I could put the photos on the web so other people could see thier centre and hopefully make donations. Just a few ££ or $$ can go a long way to feeding these children or building a toilet for them (one of the things pat wanted to do). Their website is at http://www.cambokids.org/ and I hope you can visit it and make a donation to them.
They say "We are a Khmer-run orphanage and school, taking children off the streets and other poor children on the condition that they attend school every weekday. Please come in here and read about us, and maybe agree to sponsor one of our children or a new building in your name. These are the poorest of the poor, but also the light of Cambodia ... Our Mission: To alleviate the poverty of the poor and street orphans by feeding, housing and preparing them well for a better life, through love and education."