The Banteay Srey Project is dedicated to expanding the choices available to Cambodian women who are vulnerable to the consequences of inter-generational trauma, violence, exploitation, lack of education and lifelong poverty. The Project provides a safe environment for young women to heal and learn marketable skills while earning a fair wage.
The young women who come to Banteay Srey are highly motivated to provide a better life for their families, and they work hard to achieve this vision. Mornings are spent studying spa techniques, hospitality, customer service and English. In the afternoons and evenings the trainees put what they learn into practice working at the Banteay Srey spa and café. As trainees acquire more skills, they earn more income and have the opportunity to advance within the organization or to be mentored in starting their own small business.
All profits generated from the spa and café go directly to funding the vocational program, supporting 10 to 15 trainees at any given time. After years of refining this social enterprise model, the Project is moving closer toward its goal of financial sustainability. Yet the real success of this program is the emergence of an environment that nurtures not only professional development but also personal healing. The achievements of these young women over a short period of time are often remarkable and always inspiring. (Read some of our stories in the Updates section!) Trainees and staff acting together to help each other is an important source of strength, and it is from this basis that the Childcare Project has been launched.
By far the greatest source of anxiety for program participants is their children. How well are they being looked after? Is it a safe environment? Are they being fed during the day? These young mothers know all too well what it is like to grow up in circumstances of abuse and hunger, and they are desperate not to repeat the cycle.
This is where you can help these women help themselves. Donations and onsite volunteers are needed to implement a child care and education plan cooperatively designed by the women at Banteay Srey. It will ensure that their children will be able to live with their mothers and receive quality care while they are at work. The children will have a nutritious lunch and snacks and be able to engage in stimulating educational activities and play throughout the day. Each mother will have one paid day a week assisting at the Centre allowing her to spend time with all the children, learn about child development, and practice compassionate parenting methods.
The Banteay Srey Project will provide:
- Locate a house to rent near to where the mothers work at Banteay Srey;
- Provide labour for house improvements and playground construction; and
- Manage the Centre, staff and volunteer program
What we still need:
- An estimated $4500 for construction and operating expenses, which include salary for a cook/cleaner, food, supplies, rent and utilities; and,
- Overseas volunteers to work at the Centre, teach English and facilitate educational activities for the children.
Last year we received enough funding to allow us to get started on the project. (See the Updates section.) Your donation today will help 11 children of trainees have a safe place to learn and grow in 2017.
Or volunteer by contacting Freya Metz at firstname.lastname@example.org .