Happy New Year 2019

In CategoryJohns blog

Happy New Year from our Schools in the Kamchay Mear District of PreyVeng Province in Cambodia. If you scroll down to the Christmas Day post you’ll find that we had just started to build a bike shed – and that is where we start today.

There are usually hundreds of happy children in our School photos, but for cleaning, painting and building most of the work is done either before the children arrive at School at 6.45am or on Saturday afternoons and Sundays – plus this week we had two student free days and all the teachers were present to paint! – they ASKED to do it!


In the last photo above you see the Builder – Prey Katha – being paid (by me)for building the Bike Sheds; they are 20mx5m and will do a perfect job of freeing up most of our land for walking, playing and gardens; you’ll see later today that Sok Ken our Head Teacher has already started a garden!


This WAS The Red Clinic cum teachers’ office….. So now it’s the Bright Pink Clinic cum Office. All the teachers helped – you’ll see six of them a bit later on.








These are the three Schools (plus the Pre-School shown later) of the Chuor Ph’av campus of Schools – together with 1000 children across two shifts every day. To the immediate right is The Captains Choice School and beyond that is our original School, The Rotary School of Beaudesert. Facing us is our brand new School – “My Health School”. The Official opening of “My Health School” is on January 26 and we are all very much looking forward to that day – with a HUGE traditional Fair into the night. I like the flags – more to come.

BUT, you are right, we have FOUR Schools plus the Pre-school. The Prey t’Baing School, named The Antibes School is a 45 minute drive away and they are often featured and will be again VERY soon.

Both of the photos above are of course of the ‘My Health School’. I’ve included the first of the two simply to show just how subtly the fact that we had to be given three metres of land by the Temple next door has seemlessly acquired a bend in the wall between the two properties. In fact all the land is owned by The Government. We are a Government School – funded and cared for by all the Donors and helpers. Before WE arrived there was NO school. WE work well with The Government and they like us – BECAUSE BECAUSE BECAUSE we ALL love the thousands of children we have already had through our schools …. and will have through our schools….. and their families.

The second photo shows six of our teachers who came in specially when the School was in fact closed. If you scroll down to Christmas Day you’ll see the same six teachers with a group of children who volunteered to come in for a photo needed by the Federal Government in preparation for a special ceremony on the 26th .. (you’ll just have to wait).


We see the teacher Ren Soth and Head Teacher, Sok Ken, outside the freshly painted Pink…. Bright Pink Office.



We see the buildings and grounds being maintained and improved especially (!!) with January 26 in mind! Think back to the bike sheds …. with hundreds bicycles left outside classrooms there was no free space for walking, let alone gardens and PLAY. The first photo shows a garden bed that Sok Ken has built, The second photo shows just a fraction of the cleaning that is happening. For the sake of ventilation there are no ceilings in our Schools and the underside of roof tiles need cleaning. Third and fourth photos show The Captains Choice School and The Rotary School of Beaudesert side by side; we also see them from the brand new verandah of My Health School.

Above, we see two photos showing the line of Buildings from right to left – the Pre-School (Chez Hilary) which was intended to be teachers’ accommodation but was only every needed once! Now it is the ideal home of the Pre-School; then the Pink Office cum Clinic; then the water treatment station for ground water (we have rain water from the roof of course. We then see The Captains Choice School, then the Rotary School of Beaudesert and across the far end – My Health School ….  and when I showed these photos to two people before uploading to here, all they said was ” What an amazing sky”!

This is what you see in the video below – a 32 second pan from right to left.

Enjoy the 32 second sweep from right to left.

We finish today with Breakfast Srok Khmer (rural Cambodia) style. This is under the Guesthouse – on the right we see Chanthou and in the centre is Chanthou’s 83 year old mother and on the left, Mother’s young friend, the 70 year old Om.

70 is ‘old’ in rural Cambodia and 83 is very rare indeed.

We’ll see some of you HERE before and for the ‘opening’ and Fair on the 26th and then, after the 26th, I’ll try to make the report on the day as ‘alive’ as I can!

Happy New Year to you from our children, our teachers and our families…. John.



Leave a Reply