Major Guesthouse News – and an appeal – onwards

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

To frequent readers and to first time readers: We did not ask for one dollar towards building our Guesthouse because it was the private project of two people – Beaudesert Rotarians, Linda and Mark Jackson –

Linda and Mark have given – yes, given – DONATED – the Guesthouse and land to Educating Cambodia. It has been donated via Rotary Australia World Community Service (RAWCS) to Educating Cambodia – putting the Guesthouse on almost the same footing as the Schools and Clinic buildings. I say ‘almost’ because the schools and Clinic buildings are on Cambodian Government land; Educating Cambodia owns the land beneath the Guesthouse.

There are thousands of photos on this website and 170 of and in the Guesthouse itself. This photo of the front stairs was taken in January 2015 as the Beaudesert Rotary Club was conducting an early trial run of our accommodation.

We are in a very remote village setting – heavily populated, desperately poor but remote. Briefly we foresee school and clinic visitors and volunteers and indeed people who might want to see or experience remote Cambodia and village life. We will very soon price accommodation to cover all costs and provide money for the schools. We will then advertise appropriately.

  NOW – Educating Cambodia urgently needs US$10,600

Please – we need a total of US$10,600 to complete and pay for the last building jobs.

We can ask for your help now because Educating Cambodia now owns it.  The Guesthouse is now part of our ‘Prey Veng Schools Projects’ and is registered by Rotary International as project number #70656.

We urgently need US$2100 for a solar hot water system, pipework and header tank.

US$  800 for a large rainwater tank with connection to existing gutters

US$7700 for last purchasing of cement, sand, bricks, tiles and labour

________

US$10,600

How to Donate.

Every dollar counts and adds up.. If you can help in a small (or large) way  then please click on the ‘Donate’ section on the left of your screen and pay by Paypal  - this is linked directly to the Educating Cambodia section of the bank account of The Rotary Club of Beaudesert and the Club then sends 100% of your donation to Cambodia and in this case for the Guesthouse.

If you want to pay some other way e.g. Educating Cambodia’s bank account by online banking then email me personally at fromjohnmann@hotmail.com or maybe a message to our facebook page on http://www.facebook.com/educatingcambodia

Again: to Linda and Mark Jackson,

“Thank you for your VERY kind and extremely generous donation of THE GUESTHOUSE”!

On behalf of all our children and their families -thank you to everyone,

from John.

Passing The Guesthouse on the way to School.

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

The first photo today is taken inside the Guesthouse – in the kitchen.

 In the kitchen area of our Schools Guesthouse – Chanthai is helping Maigin get ready for school. We have cared for Chanthai since the very beginning of EducatingCambodia and she has her own section in the ‘village children’ section – see the index to your left – Chanthai often helps at the Guesthouse.

All the remaining photos today are taken either OF our brand new Guesthouse gates or on the track next to them.

 The gates are new and so is the 60 metre southern wall you can see in this photo. Both the gates and secure walls are required by our local government and the police who look after us. (During the many years we have known all levels of Government and Police we have ALWAYS had an honest and cheerful friendship.)

 

  one of our School boys, Chen,  helping with the decorative paint.

A series of photos now, mostly of our School Children coming and going. There are two shifts of classes – the morning children and the afternoon children.

 This is Tian, one of our teachers

  (The Guesthouse wall on the right) There are villagers cycling and walking through the villages selling home grown fruit and vegetables and snacks they have made. Everything costs the equivalent of a few cents.

 The little boy, Thon, is with Danni who helps at the Guesthouse. Beaudesert Rotarians who visited in January will remember Danni.

 This is what happens if you ask people to smile!

 All on the Guesthouse motorbike. Peery (you know Peery – Nangs daughter) then Mab driving, then the twins, Soklep and Sokleah and last is Soit who you also know… on the way to school. (please don’t tell me there are five people on a two seater 100cc motorbike AND no helmets. It’s one kilometre on slow dirt…. and ANYWAY this is VERY VERY rural Cambodia.)

 This man makes fruit and vegetable drinks – VERY healthy!

 Again the Guesthouse motorbike, this time with Maigin at the back.

From our Schools and the villages, the children hope you like our photos and stories. We need your financial help. If you can help in any small way or LARGE way – look to the left of your screen and find the Donate. page.. Thank you, John.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

‘Nang’s 100 Day Ceremony’ – Nang – Death and Khmer Buddhism. ‘Bon Nang’

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

‘Bon Nang’ translates to ‘party or ceremony for Nang’ but more particularly ‘The 100 day Ceremony’

We start today with a short video of the ‘Welcome to Nang’s 100 Day ceremony – Bon Nang’.

The music, chanting and prayers continue from dawn to dusk.

These are  notes that I wrote on the day of the 100 Day Ceremony, together with thoughts that have settled a little since. This is how Khmer Buddhism works after death and – specifically about Nang.

Nang died on February 1 2015 and was cremated the following day across in the small ‘extended family’ field set aside for cremation bonfires. One hundred days later we hold ‘Bon Nang’

The strong (total) belief is that for sometime after death both Nang and the Spirit World are unsure what should happen to Nang’s Spirit or Soul. The 100 day ceremony is for everyone who knew Nang – family and friends – to show their support and love for Nang – to be together all day, eating and talking and praying – our local monks and nuns are here too -…. All this is to show the Spirit World things they might not know or may have missed, to encourage a favourable ‘onward’ journey.

 This is Nang’s shrine for the day, set within a marquee. The photo at the bottom right is Nang age 16. (the other photo is of Nang’s Grand Parents)

I took every photo ever taken of Nang; many of them are within Nang’s Story, to your left in the Index. Nang died at age 24.

 

About 500 people are expected so lots or friends and family are involved in preparing food.

 

It’s an all day ceremony from dawn till dark..Older monks have often moved back in with their families and are a great source of ceremonial knowledge and wisdom. They sit together and wait as do the older women, some of whom (with very short hair) are nuns. They too are a good source of advice and history.

 

  

We haven’t got dressed properly for the day in the third photo above. This is Nang’s mother, Cheng and Nang’s daughter, Peery.

My writing today …..  I will do as well as I possibly can. If you read ‘Nang’s Story’ to your left you will see that Nang was important to me and I was important to Nang…five times I have used the phrase ‘We don’t necessarily believe in miracles but we do rely on them” – time and time and time again Nang fought through and stayed alive…(read Nang’s Story)  and I was given and took a role at both her funeral and throughout this ‘100 Day ceremony’.. and she remains important.

So: there is a total belief that what we THINK and SAY about a person after their death effects their ‘pathway’ or ‘onward journey’.. It is all about helping Nang as best we can.

This ‘onward journey’ can take any form. Almost everyone expects re-birth either into a better life for good people, or for bad people – a worse life.  Nang did nothing wrong so everyone who knew (knows) Nang expects a better life for her this next time….. BUT….

….BUT…. there are two more options – if Nang was perfect or was at peace eventually with perfection then TWO options are put to Nang by The Spirit World:

1 Nirvana – go to paradise …. (Nang fought death right to the last second. Nang was desperate to be alive so not necessarily at ‘peace’.)

2 She can voluntarily become what the Tibetans call a ‘Boddhisatva’, a kind of living angel. This would mean that Nang is given the chance of Nirvana (Heaven) or she can be reborn to help the WORLD. (we have possible examples of Boddhisatvas in say Mother Theresa, or even Nelson Mandela or Ghandi – controversial names I know but I hope you get the idea. In other words, ‘there is far too much to do in THIS world for me to live in Paradise!’…

There are other possibilities – stay around as a GHOST (Khmer people are VERY scared of this option and have all sorts of prayers and practices to stop Ghosts getting into their home …)

…… or live on through others!… consciously being part of other people…… BUT most people think ‘re-birth’ for ALMOST everyone.

‘Bon Nang’ was all day. A marquee, food, a dais and hundreds of people – sitting, talking, laughing, crying, eating, chatting and milling around – prayers, chanting – a very good day.

Peery and I get ready to receive guests and get through a long day.

    

I have a great many photos of everyone in the villages. I have enlarged many of Nang’s photos partly to ensure that 6 year old Peery has a chance of remembering her wonderful mother. My personal favourite is the second photo in this row. I took it after Peery’s first day at School. Peery had already started to learn to draw the Khmer alphabet and she was teaching her mother. Nang never went to school. No one went to school before we built the first School.

 A very interesting photograph. It is a photo-shopped version of the other one – the original – see below.

 

  Nang’s mother took my original to a  small internet stall in a Market and got them to add extra hair and a business jacket.. Its a very moving piece of wishful thinking. Nang’s mother wanted this photo in the shrine but I won the discussion. I wanted a real photo.

There was a small official ceremony in the morning and a BIG ceremony in the afternoon, with people sitting around tables, 8 people to each table, eating and drinking in say 30 minute sittings right throughout the day – five hundred people

It costs money to hold this special day for Nang; the monks need paying, there’s a lot of food and drink – there are chairs, tables and marquee hire and sound equipment. (All the official prayers and chanting is broadcast all day from a loudspeaker)….. So there is an entrance fee of about $1 which most people can’t afford, so ‘most people’ give a small bag of rice and/or a couple of home grown vegetables… The day unfolds within the photos so you should be able to find written comment from me that matches one or more of the photos.

I was ‘family’ and was there, setting up, hosting the monks and nuns, helping with food and eventually saying Bye bye to everyone and packing everything away. Everyone knows everyone and it was a friendly, loving, day – for Nang – but also of course for the family and cohesion of the villages.

Peery not entirely sure what to make of the day.

   

Food being prepared throughout the day. Woks of chicken and rice soup constantly simmering.

 

The day was expensive – food, monks to pay, marquee, chair and table hire – but most people couldn’t afford the $1…. so most people paid with a small bag of rice or a home grown vegetable or fruit.

 we’ll eat later after everyone else.

  

All day long, the tables fill and the people move on to chat and tell tales of Nang’s life.

Food is given to Nang.. The door to the ashes shrine is open so people can chat to her or with her.

   

Our monks are VERY good. The head monk or Abbott on the right  (There are many small articles in which he features through this website) does lots of official prayers but the more important parts are basically a eulogy.. Nang’s life from the village perspective.

Nang’s Doctor (See Nang’s Story) – ‘OUR Doctor - Doctor Tour Suy – wrote to me . “Nang is with you and me always” and I replied ‘Always”… Right now,- Nang is with me..

Nang’s Story is far from over. Nang has inspired me to fight without hesitation- to cling to our goals and life – to make our Clinic work and to get ALL our boys and girls as far as we can. And Peery will thrive. Jana from Australia (Jana also paid for Chanthai’s Dentistry) is giving $50 per month to ensure Peery is safe and well into the future and I will help with the rest. One of the very good things about our villages is that they are remarkable examples of the old saying “The village raises the child”. There is an entire village to care for Peery.

John.

 

 

We went to get Soit – and we’ve got Soit

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

 

(There is an extra photo and notes added at the end of this post – added on June 15 2015)

If you haven’t already seen  ‘Bye bye Soit…’  it is immediately below this post -please read it now because otherwise none of this post will make any sense.

 

In writing today I have mostly simply linked my actual scribbled notes that I write constantly in an exercise book at the time of anything happening.

 

…everyone loves this story and we’ve only just started!…

 

That ‘bye bye Soit report and linked emails and Facebook Page really pulled at heart strings…and so far very few people know that we …….now have her back safely!

 

 

This is how getting Soit back happened so apparently quickly. Apart from myself, a large number of people were quite affected by the ‘By bye Soit’ report. My own daughter with a PhD in Education said it was the saddest thing she had ever read from me. Within days, my good friend Ros from England asked how much we might have to pay Soits family so that she wouldn’t have to work at age 14  -12 hours a day on a farm for US$3 per day…..

 

…. We came to a figure of US$100 per month for one year – and Ros would pay. Ros sent me the first US$100.

 

There was a very difficult two weeks while I did verbal battle with elders who have zero concept of the value of Education particularly for a family with a clever child…. They even talked about “jobs are difficult to get”….. Then “the value of education to a girl of almost marriageable age” reared its ugly head again (haven’t heard that one here for eight years)… I was ready with important Khmer identities in the wings – ready to help my arguments – but then after literally waving $100 notes in front of old village people – saying “well it obviously matters to us”!… the village agreed with me…

 

… but then they told me that the Chinese farm owners would not pay her unless she stayed for one more month – I responded almost automatically with, “they needn’t pay her, we will pay her”…

 

…. Then, it was, “it’s a boat and three buses, she can’t do that by herself’ …… that clinched it for me!!!!

 

She needed ‘rescuing”…. I put together a small team of friends – no ifs, buts or excuses, we are coming to get Soit.

 

 

From now on these are cobbled together notes from me, first in Koh Kong (the far south west) and also on the journeys there and back. To start the trip I  took a team of three plus me, knowing it could be an involved ‘rescue’ from Koh Kong Island which is 60 miles from the main land town with the same name.   The note under the first photo I wrote on the morning of the 11th

‘Rescue Soit’ starts today. We’ll be at least five days depending on all variables! If you look at an Internet map and first find Kamchay Mear in the north east of Prey Veng province – then find our destination – Koh Kong Island in the far south west near the Thai border: The  photo is of the rescue team having breakfast on the first leg near the Mekong (Prek Temak bridge).  We are, me, my friend Tier, Danni and Chanthou. (This is the start of a better future for Soit).  

Hours later, time to eat again an hour south west of Phnom Penh, in Kompong Speu (pronounced ‘Spoo”).

We meet up with the fifth member of our team, Dareth. Dareth lives in Koh Kong; I have known Dareth for nine years and he knows the area very well – he is a local tuk tuk driver and will be our transport, local guide and a big help generally.

 We get to the Island to discover that the farm is surrounded by Security and the won’t let us in.

 

 

. It was one of the possibilities I had planned for. It just needs patience and a little embarrassment.. I  said gently, “I’m not leaving without the 14 year old girl who should be in school in her village”.

 

(Chinese security Guard)…as I also knew the Chinese owned  industrial scale farm weren’t paying her and they wanted her to stay ANOTHER month and then they’d pay her. I said “‘there’s no need for you to pay her – I will pay her mother an EXTRA $100 – ( I waved $200).. The Guards then tried “we don’t understand what you are saying, please come back tomorrow.” …

   

…I was prepared for that too… I said, “its 100 kilometres to the nearest hotel; I’ll sit here all night and wait – or you can just give her to me now”

 

They brought Soit out to the security gate. ($200 is now already with Soits mother – 100 plus the 100 she wasn’t being paid “unless she stays”.

 

 

One happy girl ready to study again.

 

 

I wrote these next notes as we all travelled back to a hotel on the mainland.

-”We’got Soit. It’s a big story. Difficult from Security on the island 100k from Koh Kong town. Much sitting, diplomacy and veiled threats. Expensive but Soit is here with us”. 

 

 

 

I wrote  at 11pm local time Tuesday May 12. “It’s now a two day holiday on the rivers and through the mangroves before we all head back through Phnom Penh and on back to the villages…”

 

 

 Chanthou on the left, Danni, Soit (still with her precious hat) and Dareth – getting supplies eady for our all day boat trip through rivers, mangroves and waterfalls.

 

  

  

 

   T.he next day we caught a bus from Koh Kong bus station to Phnom Penh (on the way back to the villages) We have a big meal in a small Restaurant on Riverside, Phnom Penh, overlooking both the Tonle Sap and The Mekong……… THEN just as we are eating, right outside our Retaurant from a boat in the the river theres a massive FIREWORK Display…. It was just as if it was for us and our successful mission… It was in fact King Sihamouni’s Birthday Fire work Display… The Palace is 100 metres up river.

As I sign off today, we have arrived back in Chuor Ph’av Village – (Ros has also paid for half the cost of the ‘rescue mission’ itself)…

…there might be MUCH more to go with this incredible story…. but enough for now….. I’ll keep you posted. John.

ADDED on May 22 2015

I tried to add these next two photos on May 19 2015 but there was zero internet in the villages – trying again now!

  

I took these two photos (above) On May 19 -It was Soit’s first day back at School. She is with her friends, the twins, Soklep and Sokleah and six year old Maigin. They are standing on the steps of Soit’s one rom (total) home – although for the next year I want Soit looked after in the Guesthouse.

We give out uniforms as soon as we can afford to buy any. I thought today was a very appropriate day for new uniforms! – You sometimes donate money for specific things and sometimes generally but EVERY CENT goes to our Schools and villages.If you’ve read me on the subject of uniforms before: we have no rich children – many can’t afford strong clothes and in some cases, clothes of any kind for smaller children! We buy uniforms locally (they are made in Cambodia for western shops!) The uniforms we buy are strong and SHARED by the wider family.               John

ADDED on June 15.

Yes Soit is back at school and this photo was taken on June 13 2015 Soit has been given this months US$100 from Ros to support Soit’s family so that the very bright 14 year old Soit can keep going to School.
    This is a very special photo. Yes we have hopes and plans for Soit and one day for all our kids. The money is actually 410,000 Cambodian Riel. John.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bye Bye Soit – for now …

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

My daughter Nell says that this is the saddest post she has seen – and she has seen them all. Nell has a Doctorate in Education.

Our dreams and goals are continually challenged.

Our aim is to provide basic education in the Khmer language to ALL our regions children. This effectively means, Khmer reading and writing, mathematics, science, history, geography and  a lesson akin to General Studies (or SOSE in Australia.) Tian, one of our teachers also teachers very basic English.

A new or secondary aim WILL BE at least a selective High School level of Education. This WAS planned through a major fund raising Dinner by a Golf Club in The South of France – this Dinner and hence the High School is now sadly on hold or cancelled – see a recent Blog.

We have at any one time around 40 students age 14 –  15 who the teachers regard as of eventual University standard. The first problem is getting the students to a distant High School which we can do for about ten of ‘OUR’ graduates in the Tuk Tuk kindly donated by Peter Greenwell of Beaudesert Rotary. …….

……. Today illustrates the second problem.

 

……. Soit (pronounced ‘sew it’ said quickly) was one of our top 40 students. Soit is 14 years of age. Her father died 3 years ago. They are one of our very poorest families. They don’t own a rice field. Basically they cannot afford for Soit not to work. (our schools are free but the family has to eat)

In the photos you see Soit desperately insisting that she wear this hat  (from The Rotary Club of Beaudesert) getting into a mini bus with her mother to trave with her hat to the far south west corner of Cambodia to the Island of Koh Kong where she will work on a Chinese owned flower farm for US$3 per day. She will not attend a school. (if you are not crying at this stage – I certainly am)

There is no ‘buying her back’ or a belated scholarship at least yet – we have to let this go for at least a year or two.. I will stay in touch through the extended families.

Soit was one of our founding students and so has had a full six years of Education. In a big way we have achieved what we set out to do – given her the start (at least) of a basic education. She has not been sold into the sex industry and knows a little of the world from her schooling. Even if Soit never goes to School again we will have an educated mother one day. As I said the other day in my previous post – she WILL come back to the villages so – me being a somewhat determined kind of guy  - Soit will have to wait but is not forgotten.

John

Happy Khmer New Year

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

Yes – TODAY is Cambodian New  Years Day.

As in several other Asian countries, the School YEAR ended on March 31… The New School Year will start on April 20. The Cambodian New Year falls this year on April 14 – lots and lots of celebrations and a national three day holiday. There are no ‘annual holidays’ here , instead there are numerous religious holidays of two and three days.  These short holidays bring many people back to their home villages for celebrations, gatherings and a great many weddings – weddings planned because it’s the time when everyone ‘comes home’.

This New Year holiday is the longest of the year – three days – stretching for some to four days – within the three week school break. Phnom Penh and the bigger towns almost literally empty with thousands upon thousands of laden 100 cc motorbikes  heading to the villages. People who have spent months in Thailand earning $3 a day instead of the the $1.50 per day possible in Cambodia have come home for New Year. The 500,000 young women working in the Chinese owned garment factories in Cambodia have ALL headed beck to ‘SROK KHMER’ – the countryside..

I’ve taked about the importance of villages elsewhere on this website – - VILLAGES are the centre of all activities in Cambodia – not the cities. Amost all weddings happen back in the ‘home village’… the leaders of villages give the permission for passports and weddings and keep the family and village records constantly up to date. I’d go as far as to say that almost all medium and long term life in Cambodia either happens in the villages or at the very least – deferring to village opinion when making decisions is crucial even after people have moved to a city – that move to a city is seen by EVERYONE as temporary.

Almost all the photos today are of our school children on holiday around he villages.

The Guesthouse is about the same as we left it two months ago but with extra soil everywhere, especially down the southern boundary ready for a wall  and then a front gate and doorway. I’ve been talking to businesses in Phnom Penh about solar hot water systems – more on that in a week or so. No one can stay here in any formal sense until the wall and gate are complete .A BIG FORMAL advertised opening with goals, prices etc is coming your way as soon as we are ready.

We will close today at the end of this post with our teachers (also on holiday) being presented with two laptops for use by any of our teachers at the Chuor Ph’av Schools.

 One of our early graduates named Um. Um only had two years of schooling (first school was being built and Um was 12 years old) but it was just enough for reading and basic writing and SOME arithmetic.  She is working in a shop in Phnom Penh. Um sends money home every month. Home for New Year today. She is gathering a vine that grows up some palm trees – it is used as a vegetable

 still at school Mab helps in the family shop. The shop, in Chuor Ph’av village – 20 metres from the Guesthouse – sells many essential items but in tiny amounts eg 100mls of cooking oil. The family vehicle is this motorbike – it is precious and stored within the shop.

 Micara (Da) second from the right is with her family under her house in the kitchen area  (fire in an earthen ware  pot. In the ‘village children’ section to the left of screen you will find that Da has her own sub section. Da’s mother Ian is next to her.

 Da again, with her lttle sister Ut. Very sadly. Ut lost most of her toes in an accident; her mother, Ian, was harvesting rice with the special small sythe. I’ll add these two photos of Da to her village children subsection soon.

  Bit and her home. (Bit has her own subsection in the Village Children section too; these will be added soon. Bit is still mal-nourished – it’s a combination of inadequate food and worms – we are trying hard to address these things.

  I walk around with my camera obviously taking photos of people; when I do, people want their photos taken to say ‘ thank you for trying to help’… In this photo a mum is saying ‘these are my children, thankyou, Happy New Year.’

 two more children that you may know. Nang’s daughter Peery on the left and Chankim on the right. If you remember a photo of a very new mother over a hot charcoal bed (many posts below!) – this is her baby 6 years on – Chankim.

 a hold hands in a circle game.

 Chanthay is doing  very well at school. Chanthay is one ‘the three friends’ – Chanthay, Bit and Da (see above) – Ive been taking their photos since the y were babies. this photo will be copied to the village children section soon.

 On the road through the village.

 Cousins by their home near the centre of the village.  Centre of the village. foreground – this is not a postbox  - there is no mail, in or out) this is a small family shrine – incense and family ashes.

 near the centre of the village.  Tee outside her home

 Six year old Lit next to her pile of rice straw… just like  other straw, it has a tiny bit of nutritional value for the very under fed family cow.  Lit started at our school just last year. A happy girl.

 see the village shop above – these three  are saying thank you because I’ve just bought them some food.

 In the kitchen area of The Guesthouse – laptops for the teachers.

On behalf of The Rotary Club of Beaudesert we presented the teachers with two good strong new laptops. They are VERY grateful. We also distributed lots of knitted beanies (hats) “yes, we feel the cold”!…..lots of socks and bags and bags of ‘in date’ medicines…  All these things were donated from the Beaudesert and Kooralbyn regions in Australia.

The Cote d’Azur in France – from the Antibes Shows and from Mougins School (see earlier posts) has also recently paid $1600 for text books and Exercise books and purchased two laptops for the Prey t’Baing ‘campus’ –  known as Antibes School.

Enough for today I think; its certainly difficult to concentrate when everyone else is merry making on a very joyous New Year. No wait – one more………

 This photo will be added to ‘Nangs Story’ (in the index to the left of screen). If you dont know her strory yet, you wont understand this photo.. I have given this photo (and others framed) to Peery. Nang died on February 1 – this is her daughter Peery. I took the photo that Peery is holding on Peerys first day at home after school. Peery was showing her mother what she had learned (see Nangs Story)… Across all or our twelve villages feeding three schools, children are sharing their learning with entire families.

Happy New Year – from your villages in the District of Kamchay Mear.

(ADDED on April 15 – photos of Peery have been copied to ‘Nang’s Story” and photos of Bit, Da and Chanthay have been added to ‘Village Children.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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La Timonerie – Annie and Stefan. A magical night.

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

Oh yes – Mais Oui …. yes yes yes!

Annie Reid MBE is a very well known Actress – famous for so many shows and rol;es in English, Theatre TV and film…  Annie starred recently in BBC ‘Last Tango in Halifax’  - she was in ‘Dinner Ladies’.. Annie starred as the mother in the film “The Mother’ with Daniel Craig. Throughout her long career, Annie has been in just about EVERYTHING, from the 1950′s version of ‘Robin Hood’ Coronation Street’ ‘Benny Hill’ and ‘Hancocks Half Hour’ – my very personal favourite is Annie’s shears in the cult classic movie ‘Hot Fuzz’ – (watch it!)

WOW – anyone close to the Northern Hemisphere – get yourself to Antibes this coming Friday and Saturday.

 Annie in ‘Last Tango in Halifax’.

Stefan Bednarczyk is a musician and Actor who people flock to see and hear.

Some years ago Stefan and Annie met up at this very place on Cap d’Antibes – La Timonerie and have devised an incredible collaboration – this is it!!!

Friday night April 10 and Saturday the 11th….

Seriously -IF YOU ARE any where near France this coming weekend – Go see Annie and Stefan and you will be directly helping OUR children in Prey Veng, Cambodia.         John.

(EDITED) A very important dinner in France – Mougins for Cambodia.

In CategoryJohns blog
Byadmin

EDITED on April 4 2015

Very sadly the Dinner advertised below has had to be CANCELLED – not enough time to prepare such a big event -.

We will leave the post here  - you never know, someone in the future may pick up and run with the idea – we really hope so..

I does mean that a High School for our children is now very much on hold. Obviously we have to maintain the schools and Education that we already have until we have this sort of new funding;

So below is the unaltered but CANCELLED Dinner.

On April 24 2015

The Royal Mougins Golf Club will host a magnificent Dinner to raise money for our children.The goal is to build  a HIGH SCHOOL!. It will named  something like, ‘Mougins High school – Cambodia’ or maybe ‘The Royal Mougins High School – Cambodia’ – we’ll talk through a name and plaques etc later.

http:www.royalmougins.fr

The Golf Club is being helped by Mougins School – The International School which has helped us in Big ways on several previous occassions (scroll down for the latest show at the school just last year) … I’m also certain that Hilary in Antibes will be a major inspiration and help.

If you open the School site and find ‘Newsletter” you will see the letter that school parents and students have seen.

http://www.mougins-school.com

There are two months to go at the time of writing so I’ll give an update  closer to the ‘Dinner’ date of April 24. Meanwhile – here is the POSTER -

Just two months to wait for this special night. If you are reading this in The South of France then put the 24th April into your Diaries. For everyone else, you could actually donate to that night by contacting one of the organisers on the poster.. … Lots more news SOON. John.

SADLY, if you’ve come in at the bottom of the post – the Dinner was CANCELLED on April 4 2015. Ever onwards with more plans and progress.. John.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nang’s Story.

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A very very sad time in the village – for Nang’s family, for the village and for me.

Please open ‘Nang’s Story’ – in the Index on the left of your screen.

Nang has died. We fought hard for years with Nang.  Nang inspired many of our village health concerns and projects.

Nang’s daughter Peery is five years old. Nang will live on, not only in hearts but also in village projects. Peery will be loved, cared for and supported.

Seventeen photos and notes added to ‘Nang’s Story” today.

John.

Bon Chance ANTIBES – “Down and Out in London and Paris”

In CategoryJohns blog
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This weekend on Cap d’Antibes:  A troupe of Dublin Players will give

two performances – Friday the 6th February and Saturday 7th February of -

George Orwell’s play “Down and Out in London and Paris”

 George Orwell’s Paris 1933 – the year his book was published.

If you have either chanced upon this post while browsing or you are a regular from anywhere around the world but you just happen to be in The South of France over this weekend – make contact with anyone in Antibes and they should (hopefully) direct you there …

 and George Orwell himself in 1933.

Now, please scroll down to the ‘previous posting of Australians in our Guesthouse. The Antibes audience always gets an update…. absolutely up to date – of happenings in our villages and Schools.. If you should scroll further back you will find announcements and comments on several years of these truly wonderful shows at La Timonerie…..

John.