Funding Update: Australian Communities Foundation – Espero Fund

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We are pleased to announce that we have received funding from The Espero Fund, a sub-fund of the Australian Communities Foundation, for the English language program we support in Cambodia.

Human and Hope Association Cambodia‘s English language program transforms the lives of some of the poorest and most socially disadvantaged children in rural communities around rural Siem Reap. English skills are essential for gaining a well-paid job in the tourism sector, which provides most of the employment opportunities for locals, with over six million tourists visiting Siem Reap each year. Without knowledge of English, children are likely to follow in the footsteps of their parents who struggle to survive day-to-day as farmers, builders and rubbish collectors.

The English program is run by Cambodian staff who are university graduates. Classes cover general English, creative writing and conversational English. Human and Hope Association Cambodia has developed culturally appropriate textbooks and students also learn through games, reading, singing and visual aids. Once a week they study in the library, using a range of English reading materials.

Students also study Living Values, introduced in response to the difficult home lives of many students. They study topics such as children’s rights, hygiene and safety and learn about values of respect, punctuality, patience and cooperation. These classes have improved the behaviour and attitudes of our students, making them into role models in their families and local communities.

With a long waiting list, we were requested by Human and Hope Association Cambodia to source the funds to hire an additional English teacher. With the funding we have received, Human and Hope Association Cambodia will be able to increase their enrolment from 180 students to 230 students.

Aside from improving students’ English, life skills and behaviours, other outcomes from the program include:

  • improvement in student behaviour as a result of studying under the guidance of positive Cambodian role models, which then spreads out into the community
  • children developing a love for learning, increasing the likelihood of them staying on at public school
  • participation in social and cultural events such as circus shows and film festivals, broadening students’ horizons
  • improvement in the wellbeing of whole families, through parents and relatives attending HHA workshops on issues affecting them.

We are so grateful to the Australian Communities Foundation – Espero Fund for their valuable contribution to this education program.

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