Cambodia: Life after sponsorship

The Banan sponsorship project is in its final year of a 15 year cycle - this is how World Vision operates to help transform communities. We wanted to share with you Chunny’s story; she was a sponsored child in the Banan project many years ago and has since gone to university. She now works as an accountant – her dream job where she can give back to her community and World Vision.

By Chunny, former sponsored child from the Banan project

When I was a child, I wanted to be a business woman and a teacher.

I became a sponsored child when I was seven years old. I lived with a family that had an average life – we got an income but not much. It meant we were not poor but not rich; we could get enough food for the year but sometimes it was not good.

What was the best thing about being a sponsored child?
My sponsor, Mr Kevin, he sent me letters. In my community we had activities where we reply to our sponsors – like I tell my sponsor about my culture and when he send me a letter he tells me about Australian culture too. When he send letters he asked “How are you?” and “How are your studies?” so I’m very happy because someone other wants to know about me. It helped me want to try to study and tell him about my studies.

 

 

What has World Vision been able to achieve in your community?
Through his sponsorship, my community is better because World Vision could do many activities.

Sponsors like you support lots of activity in our community. Some activities teach and improve agriculture skills, also some about how to protect from HIV/AIDS. It made me happy when I joined sponsor activities, like when we do life skills or when I could draw and paint.

When I was a sponsored child, World Vision worked with authorities to repair road or build schools. But now – World Vision works with the community on education and Child Friendly Space to make the children brave and protected and they focus on providing life skills too.

What are Child Friendly Spaces for children?
The children can do fun activities and be educated about hygiene and child rights. Also in the evening we have English class. And also we have other activities like festivals we conduct in this place.

Child Friendly places are important; they can give the child room to play and we need to teach about child rights because some community parents did not understand about child rights. Children have the right to go to school and to join other activities, also to get love from the family and neighbours.

I saw that the community has progressed. Now the parents know about child rights and they know about the value of education so they say to their child “go to school”.

Now children in the community can go to school and they can continue to university because their parents more understand about education and can afford it.

What has World Vision and sponsorship been able to achieve in your life?
Without World Vision I would not go to University.

Because I was a sponsored child, I could continue studies and went to high school in 2006. If I had not joined sponsorship, if I did not have World Vision in my district, I could not go to university because my family could not pay for my study.

To go to University, it cost me around $300 to $400 USD a year. But my father is a farmer and he earns around $500 to $700 USD a year.

When I joined World Vision to work after high school I could get a salary so I could support my study at University.

My parents didn’t understand why I needed to study; now my father understands and can support my sister and brother to start at the university. They know how to save because of World Vision.

I work with World Vision because I like the activities. Your support means World Vision can work with poor communities and especially with children and I also want to contribute, to help my community and children.

Now, for three years, I have worked doing World Vision administration, finance and accounting. I am a business woman.

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