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.



Merry Christmas 2018. Almost ready for the Official Opening of ‘My Health School’ on January 26 2019.

In CategoryJohns blog

Merry Christmas from our villages and Schools in the Kamchay Mear District of the Province of Prey Veng in Cambodia.

My Health School was shown and written about in last month’s post (scroll down to November for those photos and notes). The building is now complete and the Official Opening will be on January 26 2019. A lot of people will be present – the children, their teachers and families together with people from the four levels of Cambodian Government, Local, District, Provincial and National. Also present will be representatives of The Rotary Club of Beaudesert…. and most importantly, this time, we will be delighted to welcome back our Donor of My Health School, Zoe Fields, who will in turn be representing Carrie Fields the owner of the International Company “My Health.” Carrie is Zoe’s daughter. In practice, Zoe wont need welcoming back because she belongs.

This post includes photos and notes on much needed desks and paint…. and more. Please enjoy. John.

It is remarkable what a coat of paint will do! Many of you are used to photos of our wonderful School Buildings… and NOW, they’re like new! The Bike Shed referred to in the video and elsewhere in this post starts construction later today and will be 20 metres x 5 metres. (two bike shed photos edited in at the end of today’s post)

Christmas is not recognised in Cambodia; Schools are open, bike sheds are built.

I have said many times over the years, we don’t have Christmas here – but that’s like saying, we don’t have miracles here. This is all a miracle. I have long since stopped worrying when I KNOW that we need something… eventually it happens with a lot of people involved – Confidence, Tenacity, Certainty, Focus, Human Love, Compassion and Effort combined with more Love, Wisdom and more Effort and we are, I understand  the largest- in child numbers – School Charity complex in South East Asia.








We now go back one month and work through the photos towards the present.






“My Health School” was built by (as always) by local builders. It is very important to understand that we import NOTHING. All labour, all teachers, all payments are LOCAL. The money arrives in Cambodia and stays in Cambodia. These photos are planning photos with Chanthou, Chhai, one of our builders, me and Sok Ken, the Head Teacher. We are making the completion and final payment to the Builders.









Next – Electricity!

We paid for the Electrity connection, cables, wiring and sockets in all the Chuor Ph’av Schools. At the same time, one kilometre away we now have mains electricity in our Guesthouse.

The connection comes into us through the Pre-School Building (known previously as the teachers accommodation and still known and signed as Chez Hilary (from France).

and into the Teachers Office cum Clinic.

This is the entrance to our Chuor Ph’av Schools and Our Guesthouse is just over a kilometre away and our twelve villages radiate from this point – so – I now have a very robust mud and dust bicycle.



The sign photos above: We used a tiny, squalid, efficient, inexpensive workshop in Phnom Penh to make the signs for My Health School and then we had to get them home to their School. They arrived relieved and safe.

Lots of meetings. This is in a roadside cafe in Kamchay Mear, our District Town. We had just had an inter governmental planning meeting for The Official Opening: – invitees, acknowledgements and several AWARDS planned, gifts for children, the elderly, the temple (our neighbour and co-tenant on Government land. – and a huge traditional Fair to plan for into the night. In the photo Chanthou is sitting with our two Commune leaders (several villages in a Commune and several Communes in a District – several Districts in a Province – in our case, Prey Veng Province.)


Always – our desks are made in Cambodia – we need a lot of desks for our new School. Our children are all under the age of fourteen so three children can comfortably sit at one of these desks.


The above three photos are some of my all time favourites. – The Children welcoming with love and awe, something as special as a School Desk. You’ll see one of these photos again a few photos down.

Our Children can start in Pre-School at age four and leave for High School in Prey Cherean village at age fourteen.Until very recently we were keeping children up to age sixteen because they were not allowed to go to Prey Cherean as that village was in a different District (although only 30 minutes away on a bicycle with a new, much better local road – dirt but good). Older children were travelling to Kamchay Mear Town in Peter Greenwell’s tuk tuk and even that was a 45 minute journey …. so; the above photo is of Bit and her friend on their first day going to our local High School. WHO IS BIT? Look at the banner of childrens’ faces at the top of this website. Bit is on the left hand end. We have known Bit since the beginning – and YES, Bit is fourteen years old. (Remember we already have two Graduate nurses from our first years – They were both sixteen years old when they started with us – with zero language or arithmetical skills. They worked very hard!

Our Guesthouse continues to be very much of a village hub and this toddler is enjoying our pretty lights.


I took the above three photos of food in the teachers office at our Schools.  tasty bean paste embedded in rice and wrapped in a banana leaf and cooked over a fire – yummy (in Khmer, yummy is Chnang na.)


I’ve slipped in the two photos above of food because this food is delicious too. One of my favourite cafes in Phnom Penh is called Vibe – it is a vegan cafe close to the Russian Market. Staff and food are good… I’ll take visitors there on a day we visit the Russian Market.

It’s true.

The above photo isn’t a good photo but it IS a special photo. The King of Cambodia, King Sihamouni, will probably be giving some important medals in relation to the work we do. (not me – but to very significant helpers) And so this photo, framed, was taken to Phnom Penh for the National Government to see the new building, a group of students and six of our teachers.

… and another group photo.


Time to clean the outside of every building – children, teachers and families all involved. The new desks in this photo are being spayed with stain and varnish by teachers Ren Soth on the left and Srey Samun. In later photos you see many people, both parents and children involved.


In the School Office with two great kind and skilled teachers and the sign  – ready.


It’s all explained in the videos below. Our teacher Ren Soth has organised and trains a junior football team (soccer) – Girls are starting too… The pitch? field? paddock? – behind My Health School! Please check out the two videos.

Look at the Soccer uniforms in the photos above. Girls are starting too. Brilliant Soth (Ren Soth) for organising this.


Painting painting painting – all leading to the video that is at the beginning (scroll up) of this our Merry Christmas Post. Check out the children with the paint rollers – they were having a wonderful time.


We close today with these photos of the combined main entrance to our Chuor Ph’av Schools complex and the Temple and Wat – monastery. The first is on entering and the second photo – leaving.

The very latest work NOW two photos edited in below:


The Bicycle Shed is taking shape TODAY.

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Me? I shall continue to wander, slowly, through the villages singing Jingle Bells with tribes of children. Wish you were here… but starting with Zoe on January 4 and Lauren on the 13th… then Susie and Peter on the 22nd and Linda and Mark on the 23rd – some of you will be. Hooray….. John.




November 03 2018 -So much to share with you. Very new things. Faster and clearer but nothing is lost.

In CategoryJohns blog

All The News – FOUR MONTHS of News.

If you scroll back down to July 2nd you will see that the Contracts were signed for MyHealth School, the UNICEF play equipment was being moved, the ground was being prepared and the first deliveries of sand and gravel were arriving.

Sadly soon after July 2nd the website became impossible to add to or edit.

(There is still a way to go with the way I can arrange photos and text with the new site BUT it is working!!)

In 2011 the amazing Otago Polytechnic in Dunedin not only created our website but offered to HOST us until we found a permanent home. The Polytech was never meant to be the website’s forever base but they generously put up with us for more than SEVEN YEARS …. Not seven weeks – seven YEARS. AND WE WERE GROWING! … and everything was (and is) blooming.

I am very grateful to Otago Polytechnic’s School of Enterprise and Development and its Head, Lesley, for so kindly hosting us for so very long.

After incredibly efficient and warm cooperation between Rob the Systems Administrator of the Polytech’ School in Dunedin and Galen, the Technical Director of  The VO Group based in both Australia and NewZealand  – and working on behalf of Carrie of MyHealth…

So …..… we NOW HAVE A NEW HOST- ‘MyHealth’ with Galen, Technical Director of ‘VO’ and working for Carrie of ‘MyHealth’ giving me fast advice. (There is now potential to change A LOT if we want to or need to, but that is for the future.) The site hosting and needed work is very generously donated by MyHealth.

To Professor Sam of Otago Polytech and to Rachel, our own dedicated Polytech third Year Information Technology student of seven years ago – EducatingCambodia is forever grateful. What’s more you will be delighted (I hope) to find that after adding seven years of WordPress upgrades, the site APPEARS almost unaltered. Every photo is still there – every word is still there… your layout, Rachel and Sam – everything.

THIS website is SECURE in every way.

Pages and photos download a lot faster and it all – photos and text – appears clearer than ever.

We’ve made two immediate changes:

  1. Reverting to the original plan – the site one again opens directly onto the latest BLOG (post)
  2. If you scroll down and down and down you will find every post since the beginning in sequence since June 2011.
  3. To the left of your screen at the bottom of the Contents list there is now a ‘drop down box’ named ‘Archive’. You target any particular month or year using ‘Archive’ … Archive is specific and doesn’t ‘scroll to previous or following posts.
  4. The Mission Statement is now in ‘About’ at the top of the Contents list and includes ‘How to Donate”
  5. ‘How to Donate’ is repeated in ‘Donate’ –  in the Contents list. The Donors Page is up to date and as ever, the various ‘Pages’ are added to from time to time.


If you have seen our site before or over many months or years you will know that we tell the story with photos and notes of, say, the previous MONTH. It’s been a full FOUR months and we could easily add 200 photos but we’ve kept it right down to the essential story.


So, just as a reminder, in July 2018, we left the new School – ‘MyHealth’ at the Contract signing stage with some very early ground preparation happening.

Our story restarts in mid July 2018….

“MyHealth School” will have its Official and Grand public opening on January 26th 2019 with Members of Beaudesert Rotary Club, Carrie and friends from My Health, Zoe (who our villages have adopted), all levels of Cambodian Government, School families and children  – all present not just for the Grand Opening but for the enormous Fair to follow – you haven’t seen a FAIR until you’ve been part of a Cambodian village Fair.

‘MyHealth School’ will be the way we display the School sign together with the My Health Logo.

This is how we got from July 2nd 2018 to today:







As with our first three Schools, it is all hand made – from the hand dug foundations to the steel reinforcement ‘skeletons’ to all the  hand filled beams and columns, the floor and later, the desks themselves – all hand made within our villages.

We pay no one at all in our villages except our village builders and our Cambodian teachers. We don’t employ secretarial or admin staff or ANY foreigners. I receive no remuneration and nor does any other non Cambodian person.  Our local builders employ locals to build our Schools – so giving EVERYONE HERE a real, genuine  sense of ownership.                                                                     
As the new School progresses vehicles bring in everything from Steel rods (interestingly it’s Australian iron ore made into steel and then reinforcing rods in Japan)  to sand and bricks. The Peter Greenwell tuk tuk comes into its own – ferrying helpers, children and cement – all along side its first function – getting children to School. In the photo, the teacher, Ren, is passing the Pre-School and Office.

Below we see Sok Ken, our Head Teacher with the partly built MyHealth School in the distance.







Above:- the view from the verandah of The Rotary School of Beaudesert.

The entire building, inside and out is expertly and beautifully cement rendered.








Steel framed roof ready for the terracotta tiles.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           I love the blackboards. The whole wall is finely cement rendered (plastered with cement). A large rectangle is painted with special black paint and then framed in wood – BRILLIANT. The concrete dais is for the teacher.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             At this stage, Chanthou traveled to Australia with me for a seven week visit to Beaudesert Rotary and Magnetic Island Rotary. We first traveled way up north for Magnetic Island and then with Zoe from her Island – the 1400klm south to Beaudesert. As you see from the poster, a VERY special Cambodian Evening was planned. It was a truly inspiring night with 100 people listening to talks, hearing Chanthou and Lauren sing, a Khmer feast and a slide show from our villages and meeting lots of old and new friends.


Zoe, John, (Linda pretending she’s not there), and Chanthou.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Hundreds of of our village children have been given teddy bears over the years….

This is Chanthou with the amazing couple who make and have made most of our teddy bears! (more to come THIS month)

The stage with our slide show. This was held at the Anglican Church Hall in Beaudesert.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  A few days later the Beaudesert Times printed this article – it is also on Beaudesert Times online.                                                                                                                                                                                                    ….. and meanwhile back at the MyHealth School Building site ……

…. the terracotta tiles arrive … and WOW!!

                                                                                                                            The terracotta tiles start arriving. (and the floor is done) The tiles, just like all our bricks are made locally right on the bank of The Mighty Mekong River. (There is a posting with photos of Mekong Brick Works deep in the depths of our ‘archives.’ )                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             One of our very hard working teachers – Ren – on the MyHealth School Verandah. The original Beaudesert Rotary School running at right angles in the background.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Ren with two visiting monks. In these photos today the School Building is almost complete. Doors have to be made and fitted and also SHUTTERS for all the windows. Note there is NO GLASS in any of our schools. There is some of our reinforcing steel running vertically through each window frame and we are making hinged shutters.  The walls and floor are all reinforced with steel.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               I think that this is a thing of great beauty. It will be a working School – MyHealth School probably by December – with the Official Opening and Fair on Australia Day – January 26th 2019.

Carrie, Zoe and friends will be there; Beaudesert Rotary Club will be there; I will be there; Chanthou will be there. All our village families will be there.

       Love to everyone from John and also on behalf of Carrie of My Health.                       

So much good news. A New School – Starting TODAY this will be very good year. “My Health School” – the contract is signed and building materials are already arriving.

In CategoryJohns blog


It has been almost two months since our last newsletter – Blog post to you. I trust that you will find today’s news worth the wait and apparent silence..

(There are a lot of names and information today; if I have got ANY of it wrong eg. you’d prefer different words or indeed, spelling (?) then please email me on john@educatingcambodia.com and I can and will immediately make the corrections.)

A lot of confidential talks, meetings, more meetings, but mostly talks, some over coffee, some in Cambodia and many on Magnetic Island Australia and to and fro with the Gold Coast of Australia.

Other things have happened day by day and week by week, but the absolute need for these three extra classrooms has meant that I (John) have kept EVERYTHING quiet until TODAY.

We paid all our teachers on June 1o and gave a Classroom Globe, as you will see below – way below – to every room INCLUDING the three yet to be built. You will also see that we used three Globes to choose approximate placement of the new three room School. So people donated to pay the teachers and others donated money for the Globes – all will be revealed below.

But I think it is reasonable to start with the new School.

My Health School

Zoe Anne Fields my good friend from years ago in Beaudesert, South East Queensland now lives on Magnetic Island 1400 kilometres to the north of Beaudesert (but still in the State of Queensland.) and a magically magnetic 20 minute ferry journey from Townsville.

The March and May newsletters (index to the left of your screen very much feature Zoe, first with Mark, Linda, Corrinne and Jon from Beaudesert and in May on Magnetic Island – photos at The Rotary Club of Magnetic Island meeting are below today’s ‘new school’ photos.

Zoe is funding the NEW SCHOOL and naming it after her daughter’s Company. So – Carrie Anne Fields runs My Health Yoga – but Yoga is only part of her internationally renowned philosophy.

To date Carrie has trained over 2000 Yoga Teachers.

Our new school in Chuor Ph’av will be named “My Health School.”. We are not expanding as such, we are addressing unacceptable overcrowding. I am not sure today whether the classrooms will be general classrooms or specialist classrooms eg maths excellence etc. Our children are ‘streamed’ at times but that philosophy is led by our teachers.

The following link is to Carrie’s beautiful and inspiring website. (a stunning photo of Carrie is on the cover)


We are very very proud to be associated with Carrie. (I was going to write ‘with Carrie and Zoe’ But very wonderfully Zoe is already spiritually right alongside us in our villages – and joined by Carrie.

We will start with a video of the contract signing in which several things are explained:-


Now lets break this down with photos, taken by many different people; some by me, others by the teachers, Ren and So Nita and several by Chanthou.

The photos are not really in much of an order but finish with the initial payment of US$10,800 and then with some site clearing and the very first deliveries of sand, gravel and bricks.

The last two photos before the land preparation photos and first material arrivals are of a meeting back at The Guesthouse with The District Leaders, the village leader and the Builders to double-check that all parties know what is about to happen. WE have done this three times before but Chai and Phai are new builders for us so we had already translated everything very carefully and in this more private meeting, everyone leaves happy.

I’ll add notes through the photos.


My Health School will face the camera and be where the slide and swings now are – the school will extend into neighbouring temple owned land, by the white wall. (see an allied note by a photo of a monk).

Three of our teachers watch as teachers Ren and So Nita check the fine details of the Contract  – for me! Then Phai our main builder talks through the contract with Ren.

Ren and So Nita check the Khmer Contract for me!


Chai and Phai. Phai cannot read or write so he relies on us and his colleague Chai. Money is counted while I take photos and make sure I understand exactly what is transpiring.

 Chanthou is covering all bases – money and contract. Heng from The District Education Office is very much working alongside Chanthou. Later, as you will see, he is not entirely happy that our Builders understand their responsibility so he and his colleague take them back to the Guesthouse for calm and kind explanations – two photos later.


There’s a lot in these photos. The Globes are my personal bit of Drama – they represent what we are doing and in a while become very useful in precisely locating the three classroom school. The Head monk (abbott in English) has become over all these years a good friend of mine and he, with Government approval, has donated all the land that we will need to place the new school a sensible distance from the line of buildings on the right. The Head Teacher, Sok Ken is the lady smiling close to camera.

In the photo to the right you see Mom, The head of The District. In a white shirt is Wai, the Village leader of the village immediately to the east of the school. The main Chuor Ph’av village is immediately to the south and that is where our Guesthouse is. Chuor village leader is in a photo below; I’ll point him out when we get there.


Knowing that my friend the Abbott (in orange – obviously -) was saying we could have as much land as we needed, we experimented by moving our three symbolic class room globes ( more about globes in later photos) until eventually we were over that small wall and onto Temple land. That small parcel of land will become School land. It is in fact important to recognise that bothe temple and all the schools are on Government land. Our Schools are Government Schools running by a 100% Cambodian Government curriculum and the temple and Monastery (Wat) is ‘Buddhist Association of Cambodia’ also on Government land. The bottom line is that WE are 100% secure since we are Government Schools on Government Land. “They need us to be able to help them and we need them to be able to help them” John.


I the photos above: contracts in Cambodia need a thumb print. Chai the builder. Sok Ken the Head Teacher and Chanthou on behalf of me and Zoe.

Then we literally place the first payment of US$10,800 into the hands of Chai (Representing Chai and Phai. In this photo everyone is represented. District Government. Local Government, The Head Teacher of all our Schools and Chanthou representing Zoe.


AFTER the signing, Heng on the left and Mom, both from District Government with Chen at the end of the table. Chen is our Chuor Ph’av village Leader with Chai facing Heng. They are helping, again, Chai (builder) understand the process. All questions and extra .. extra questions were again answered.

The fence/wall between the School land and Temple land was taken down because we need to use the offer by the Temple of some land.


The see-saw, slide (or if you are Australian – ‘slippery dip’ -) and swings were carefully dug out for later relocation somewhere to right – they need considerable restoration anyway. The play equipment was originally donated by UNICEF.

There are many great photos from this spot and photos of the schools up to today have usually been taken through these swings.


And as by magic things start to arrive, sand from The Mekong and volcanic blue stone for concrete.


Bricks, the same as roof tiles here are a strong and attractive terracotta made from Mekong clay and rice straw.


Hard hard labour. Everything is done by hand – digging for footings and foundations.

I will continue to take photos and watch over everything as building continues. Exciting – very exciting times ahead in the lives of many with the “My Health School” thanks to Zoe and her daughter Carrie with much love.


Zoe visited our schools and villages… and Phnom Penh…and Angkor Wat and Siem Riep …. and Koh Kong as you might recall from the March newsletter (index left of screen) and in the May newsletter I talk of my visit to Zoe’s home on Magnetic Island. (A gloriously pretty place).. While I was there, we planned and talked and planned some more and the result is ‘My Health School’. While I was there we attended a meeting of The Rotary Club of Magnetic Island. It was a lovely evening. The hosts for the night cooked magnificent food – our hosts were Club President Rod and his wife Paula (they run a Magnetic Island holiday company). The local Ambulance Officer talked through the difficulties and issues of accidents on this Island…. and we all had a go at snake bite strapping and resuscitation. You can see Zoe getting her arm strapped in one of the photos. I gave a talk about our Cambodian Schools and the President very movingly (well I was almost in tears – it really was a very welcoming night). Club President Rod presented me with a Club cheque for AUD$200 for our Schools.

Magnetic Island – I WILL be back.


On June 10 2018 all 14 teachers were paid. The Cambodian Government pays all our teachers and partly because we are so very remote, we pay them a salary supplement.The first and second photos are under The Geusthouse with seven teachers and Chanthou. The other five Chuor Ph’av teachers were in Prey Veng town at ‘in-service’ education. In the second photo, Sok Ken the Head teacher accepts money for those other five teachers. (see below for the three Prey t’Baing Antibes School Teachers.)

The eleven teachers at Chuor Ph’av are paid US$180 each every six months by us – and that money until now has been donated by The Rotary Club of Beaudesert. We are moving now to individual people, from ANYWHERE, taking on teachers’ salaries. If YOU think you could take that one -say one teacher – or more – for US$180 ready for the December 10 payday (its June 10 and December 10 each year.) then please, find the RAWCS – Rotary Australia World Community Service – link within the DONATE page in the index – it easy to do and is tax deductible in Australia. Thank YouJohn (we come to the other three teachers in a moment)

This is within the Head teachers office and staffroom at Chuor Ph’av.  A Few years ago a Beaudesert Rotarian named Doug Lavers McBain paid for a Classroom Globe. As any teacher or indeed any parent knows, a Globe is not just a special tactile thing to have, it is an AMAZING teaching aid. Doug gave me money for some more; this was added to by David Jones and Susie Gaardsted. I had enough money for one for every classroom including the three yet to be built. Thank you everyone.


And f you’ve been paying attention, you’ll know precisely what these two photos are all about!.

At the School at Prey t’Baing – known as Antibes School the three teachers were paid on June 10 by Chanthou – and we presented them with their very special three Classroom Globes. The three teachers at Antibes School have for some years now been paid with donations directly from Peter Greenwell of The Rotary Club of Beaudesert.

Enough for today – exciting times ahead – love to everyone from John and all the children and their families and their teachers here in the Kamchay Mear District of Prey Veng Province in Cambodia..












May 2018 – Planning – in particular the next few months.

In CategoryJohns blog

I’m writing today’s notes over the first few days of May 2018.

Right now, by far our greatest needs are around building maintenance. After we pay our 14 teachers in early June I am happy to say that we have the money needed for all our urgent maintenance needs.

As I have said several times over the past two years our next greatest need is and will be another three room school building (we call each one a school because they are a) detached from each other and b) each one has been separately funded and ‘named’ accordingly)  :-

..we are now very close to finalising the funding and our building requirements for our fourth ‘school’. The NEW School will be identical to and opposite the existing tw0 – in our main village (lots of school photos throughout this site). As you may know we operate with up to 100 children – per room – in the early shift from 7am and a DIFFERENT 100 children in the late shift from 1pm. Much more as the plans unfold and building starts over the next few months.

If you look back at the last posting on March 8 you’ll see that the preceding few months were happily very busy with a huge number of photos and their notes. You will find today – some of peoples favourites from that post together with a few that no one has seen from the same period – but we start with some new photos with their notes.


I arrived back in Australia in March and immediately we were given an opportunity to put on a display at ‘The Centre’ – in Beaudesert town. In the first photo the current Beaudesert Rotary Club President – Susan Page – is sitting with me. The second photo is perhaps particularly special; on the left is next year’s (starting July 1st) President, Lesley Turton, then Arthur McDonald, the only surviving Foundation member of Beaudesert Rotary Club – 62 years ago! – and Susan Page, President.

In the photo above, taken at one of the weekly Rotary meetings, we see Lesley – Club President after June 30 2018 and Mark Jackson who is very well known in our Cambodian villages – Mark has been, along with Linda, eight times to Cambodia. – more of Mark and Linda Jackson in photos below – and indeed, throughout this website.


I’ve spent a very enjoyable five mornings every week since mid March helping the incredible Keith Reinke sell Rotary raffle tickets in aid of all the Club projects. I challenge anyone anywhere to find a more successful raffle ticket salesman than Keith. In the second photo, Brian Yarrow dropped by for a chat. Brian was our Club President in the Rotary Year 2008-09 and is forever listed as one of our earliest and biggest Educating Cambodia Donors. There is a list of Gold Donors within the Donors Page to the left of your screen – ‘Gold’ means $500 or more.


A lovely picture I think of Keith and me and then of a raffle draw of Easter eggs donated by Woolworths Beaudesert. Carissa, the Shop Manager is drawing the raffle.. A HUGE ‘thank you’ to Woolworths. Woolworths also donated time, staff and food for a BBQ for Keith who separately raised money for the Leakaemia Foundation – Keith really is quite remarkable.



Above, we have six of the most popular photos from the past weeks – four of them from the March post and various emails and Facebook and two that see this website for the first time.


A selfie of our teacher, Sonita, that she sent to me a short time ago and next – one of our always smiling ‘Antibes School’ teachers. Antibes School is in the village of Prey t’Baing (within our Government District but a 60 minute drive through tracks from our other schools in Chuor Ph’av.)

This smile is there for just about ALL of the time. A wonderful teacher too.


From whatever angle and whether wide shots or close up photographs, our Childrens’ enthusiasm and determination is always apparent, as it is with ALL our teachers.. Browse the website, you wont find a bored child anywhere!

Another wee photo you haven’t seen before. Mark and Zoe in the Computer Shop in Prey Veng Town, buying a printer for Chuor Ph’av School, with their own money.


The two photos above bring us to right now – in Townsville, North Queensland. You have seen a lot of photos of the unstoppable Zoe in Cambodia during February and early March.

The plan WAS that I would return to Cambodia very soon – WITH Zoe……… BUT Zoe has slipped and broken her left leg in three places. I have come north – 1400 klms north of Brisbane to Townsville and Zoe’s home on the quite magikal ‘Magnetic Island’ {and I agree with Captain Cook’s observation that the island confuses compasses!)….. I will return to Cambodia soon and Zoe hopes to be well enough during July.. perhaps. all good – we shall see how healing progresses.



    Especially for people who know the Guesthouse…. and indeed we hope that EVERYONE will eventually visit…. after all, the Chuor Ph’av Schools are 0ne kilometre through the rice fields to the rear (above).

The earth moving you see in the phone footage (above) sent to me last week, you see a rice field we have acquired across the rear of the Guesthouse. As we had done for the Guesthouse, we have raised the ground level by 0ne metre. We will use this extra land for a sitting area and pond together with fruit trees and vegetables. The creating of a pond has given us the soil to raise the land up to the same level as The Guesthouse.

I am looking forward to returning to catch up with EVERYONE… to start our maintenance programme, pay the teachers on time and work toward our wonderful extra classrooms – essentially School NUMBER FOUR.

posting from Magnetic Island – John.




A great month. a LOT achieved, donated and seen – website improvements AND our website Guardian has returned!

In CategoryJohns blog

Today’s ‘Blog’ is confined to the 4 week visit by Zoe – the 2 week visit by Linda and Mark and the 3 day visit by Corrinne and Jon – all between February 7 and March 6 2018.

Please scroll through carefully so as not to miss some of the great little developments over these 4 weeks.


Zoe and Mark (also me, Corrinne and Jon) being driven in style from The Guesthouse the one kilometre to Chuor Ph’av School – driven in the Peter Greenwell tuk tuk which even though used all day every day is still going strong after 4 years. Following us are Chanthou with Linda on a 125cc motobike. A good photo of the tuk tuk, without roof/canopy, is below.


At Chuor Ph’av School we identified a number of urgent needs*. They are: paint inside and out – Blackboard renovation and paint – a number of new doors and a few new window frames. The teachers themselves listed NEW DESKS as the number one priority and I deal with that issue as you scroll further down. Teachers in the two photos above are Head Teacher Sok Ken  – Sramun our number one English teacher and Soth who together with Sok Ken will lead our ‘Local NGO’ team.

*As ‘urgent needs’ go nothing is actually as urgent as three more classrooms. I am in continuous contact with The Cambodian Government and we also work very closely with their local representatives – ‘Three more classrooms’ IS urgent and we have very limited money and the Cambodian Government has even less. We love the Cambodian Government and they love us. Their needs are transparent. we need that block of three rooms. Much more on those classrooms within a few months. John. 

 One urgent academic need was a printer. Over the years we have given two laptops (and they both still work)  – Internet is inexpensive in Cambodia and a printer, scanner, copier will be very useful. We went into the nearest large town – the Provincial capital – Prey Veng and bought a 3 in 1 printer and also paid for the necessary electrical work (and a spare ink cartridge). All this was money donated for these purposes by Zoe, Mark and Linda.

You will see, as you read through today, that Mark, Linda and Zoe have funded ALL expenditure listed.


On the left (above) in the staffroom/office is Chanthou with Zoe talking through current school needs with Sok Ken the Head Teacher. On the left of that first photo are three of our female teachers.

(Reminder: every one of our 14 teachers is a fully trained Cambodian teacher – we pay no foreigners any money at all and we employ no administrative or office staff, anywhere.)

In this group we see – back row left to right – Linda, Corrinne, Zoe, Jon and Chanthou (Mark and I? – nearby!)

Front row – CHILDREN….. To the left our tuk tuk (Peter Greenwell’s tuk tuk) in front of the water filtration building – three stepped tanks with sand.


Sramun’s class this morning – Zoe hlping out with a trial of a few English words. Chanthou looking on.


“Well done everyone,” says Zoe.


It is an extraordinary happy feeling to visit our classes. Just a wee reminder – without our help (YOUR HELP) these school buildings, let alone the classes, would not be here!

Lots of different classes in progress and a desperate need for desks, paint and blackboard restoration. We have bought blackboard paint and the teachers will prepare the walls and paint them. They are not BOARDS as such; the cement wall is sanded, the wall itself is painted, vertical and horizontal lines for chalk writing are ETCHED into the blackboard paint (which was impossible to find so we made some compromises), and a wooden frame screwed into place.

NEXT: Prey t’Baing – Antibes School.


Eleven teachers at Chuor Ph’av School and three teachers at Prey t’Baing (Antibes School) In the photos of Antibes School you see the teachers plus Zoe, Chanthou, Linda, Mark and me, John..


A priority for the Antibes School was electricity for their School itself and to power a pump, which needed to be bought for water. The temple, 100 metres away has electricity. Mark, Linda and Zoe paid for support poles set in concrete to carry new cable to the school and bought the electric pump and connection to the well (photos above).

The 43 photos below:

Zoe’s daughter, Carrie runs ‘My Health Yoga’ based in Broadbeach and New farm in Queensland in Australia (But also with a BIG internet presence. To cut a long and very beautiful story shortish, Zoe has written a Book entitled ‘Transformations – A Guided Journal” published by VIVID in Australia. Zoe has given me a copy and is herself a Yoga Healer… I KNOW we will have a lot lot more to say WITH Zoe over the coming years – like I say – it has been a wonderful four weeks with Zoe.

Prior to today we opened the website directly onto the current BLOG. Mark, Linda and Zoe have rewritten both the “About” page and the Donate page and with remarkable skill, Carlos – best friends with Carrie and her mum Zoe – in Brunei – has moved the Blog (this Blog) via a ‘Johns Blog’ link from the new Homepage – from the ‘About’ page. (But you know how to do that because you’ve just done it.)




The 43 photos above:

(incase you missed this paragraph higher up) -Zoe’s daughter, Carrie runs ‘My Health Yoga’ based in Broadbeach and New farm in Queensland in Australia (But also with a BIG internet presence. To cut a long and very beautiful story shortish, Zoe has written a Book entitled ‘Transformations – A Guided Journal” published by VIVID in Australia. Zoe has given me a copy and is herself a Yoga Healer… I KNOW we will have a lot lot more to say WITH Zoe over the coming years – like I say – it has been a wonderful four weeks with Zoe.



Our Schools combined are fed by 12 villages with around 1000 people per village. The six photos above are of some people from the very poorest of our villages (immediately behind Chuor Ph’av School) You can see our old friend Kamau in three of the photos. Kamau has her own section in ‘Village Children’ to the left of your screen – more on Kamau immediately below:

Below – Kamau’s baby – Picadeh:


The photos above show Kamau at age 12 planting rice and at her wedding a few years ago, and me with her little boy Picadeh.

Our Guesthouse has become very much a Community gathering and meeting place. Many children, often dozens at a time spend hours with us, playing and chatting. They want to help, so we bought ten child sized brooms. In the photo above, Nang’s daughter, Peery is holding the broom – the others are collecting rubbish ready for a fire in the late afternoon.


Photo 1 above at the Guesthouse, Chanthou’s mother buys one kilogram of tobacco for US$1.

Photo 2 and 3 above. Constant work and maintenance at the Guesthouse.. A new driveway cost US$75 (Donated by me. EVERYTHING and all money spent at The Guesthouse is totally separate from our Schools.)


If you read above about School needs, an urgent need is “DESKS”. All our original desks and all maintenance to date was and is done within the villages. We need new desks. We have had this new ‘prototype’ desk made within the village. The teachers and Mark, Linda, Corrinne, Jon, Zoe and I think that they are excellent and excellent value. We now need US$37 per desk. At the moment we need 60 desks.


Peery the “Beautician” uses milk and local leaves to make a ‘mask’.. Good eh?!


We traveled to Phnom Penh where Zoe (pictured in the roof top restaurant of The Foreign Correspondent’s Club) bought an Hitachi Twin Tub Washing Machine. Chetra a local young man who returned to our villages as a qualified electrician, maintained and fixed our solar inverter and entire electrical system – recommended a new (extra) solar battery and this particular washing Machine model. Zoe also paid for the extra battery.

Linda and Mark paid for the double sink and tap which is replacing a shallow trough on the floor.

Below: The S21 Prison and The Killing Fields.


We took Zoe to see and in many ways, experience, first the S21 prison and then out to the Phnom Penh Killing Fields.Elsewhere within this website and a great many other good websites the whole horrific Khmer Rouge story is told


The S21 survivors:

S21 was a code name for the confession and extermination prison housed in a High School. Phnom had been emptied of its two million residents and this particular school made secure with barbed wire, toture and death. Not one person escaped in its 4 year operation and 3 times a week inmates were bused to The Killing Fields (below)


When the Vietnamese invaded in 1979 they found that seven people were alive. We met two of those survivors today. The second man in the photos stayed alive as the official artist for the Khmer Rouge. The KR were proud of their torture and extermination processes and kept Bou Meng alive to paint its history. It is horrific beyond words

Next: The killing Fields.


Thousands of excavated skulls from shallow pits… Then a small pit where naked women were found dead. The dead men were not naked. Surviving KR soldiers readily admitted to raping all the young women and girls before beating them to death (no money for bullets)


The overall HORROR of the Khmer Rouge can most simply be summed up in the above tree. Known as The Killing tree. Babies and the younger children were swung by the feet with their heads smashing against this tree.

Every group of visitors that we have hosted over the years – we have taken to both Angkor Wat (see below) and the S21 prison and The killing Fields (above), so if you look to the Index to the left of your screen you can find a section on The Khmer Rouge and the Blog Archives are below the main index.

Next – Teaching English:


With Sok Ken, the Head Teacher present, So Nita, female teacher on the left and Sramun to the far right (plus teaching photos below) and at the far end of the table Soth, another teacher. Zoe is to left and rear. – we had a meeting under The Guesthouse to help them plan an English teaching course.



Above: Two selected Beginner (VERY BEGINNER) English classes.Most the photos are in Sramun’s calss with Zoe helping a little.

Note the physical state of the Blackboard. We have given the teachers new Blackboard paint.


Above: The infusion set attached to a bamboo cane is a common site in Cambodia. Today, Mab’s son, is attached via a canula in his ankle to a bag of saline and sucrose with some vitamins. This, the family had to pay for in a clinic, one hour away by motorbike. The family is immediately sent home (together with bamboo pole)… When the liquid has dripped through, his mother will take the needle out of Songha’s ankle and then use the piping and drip tap to cool simple engines or their 100cc motorbike engine.

Above: a new photo of Bit. Who is Bit? look at the banner of childrens’ photos at the top of our website and Bit is on the far left,


Peery is absolutely absorbed in playing Zoe’s African instrument – Sansula. And then Zoe shows the girls a video on her smartphone.

Next: The Guardian of The Website returns:


Please look at the banner at the very top of our website. The photo on the left is the first photo that ANYONE had EVER taken in our villages. (I took it) And the girl staring directly into your heart is Clee. When my son and his IT Department built our website in 2011 I asked for Clee’s image to take charge of the website on the far right of the banner – and there she stays. 

Sadly, within weeks, Clee and her mother and father disappeared. I found out only last week that her father was falsely accused of murder. Last month the police found the actual murderer and the family could and has returned. They had disappeared into the Cambodia/Thai border hills where they joined a troupe of traveling singers, dancers and actors. Clee now age 16 can sing, dance and play traditonal theatre roles…. BUT they areabsolutely penniless. They have returned to our poorest part of the village to base themselves as an entertainment troupe. The very first place they came too – weary, dusty but relieved was The Guesthouse and I was there!!

Her Dad, Pol is an incredible singer and Dancer and I know that Clee is following in his footsteps. The little travelling troupe made sure their children learned basic elementary lessons and Clee can read and write.

A lot of tears were shed the day we all found each other.


Three old friends unite; On the website banner – Clee on the far right and Chanthay third from the left. In the middle is Chanthai our Housekeeper. The three girls realise the wondrous significance of the reunion – the puppy named Bam, is however more concerned by the presence of The Teddy Bear.


Quite a group:extreme rear far lft is Nang’s sister Mab (mother of the child with an infusion). Then Cheng, Nang’s mother. From front row left to right Pic (blind and ancient Aunties great Grand daughter. Chanthou’s mother (see tobacco photo above)… Chanthai – the only person who lives full time in The Guesthouse. Chanthai has her own ‘Village Children’ section within the index. lasly on a borrowed motorbike Clee and her Dad – Pol.


The Guesthouse land running towards the camera finishes at this end of the grey concrete wall and the line of Bamboo scrub. we have bought the next 20 metres of land. ie. 20 metres X 40 metres. A Donor giving specifically for this precise 40 X 20 metre block (two half rice fields) has purchased this land for The Guesthouse. It will be used for several purposes. Banana trees for both dust suppression and food… and Vegetable growing for The Guesthouse; in the second photos the first banana trees arrive on March 7 2018.


Next: we traveelled to Siem Reap which is very much a Tourism Town (city) in Cambodia’s North West…. BUT most importantly it is the town with Hotels and Bars that is right next to ANGKOR WAT.

Angkor Wat is… really is… Awesome.. Incredible fascinating, spread out and H   U   G   E. Angor Wat itself is by far the

worlds largest religious structure. Once any traveler has seen OUR Schools and villages – the next thing to see is Angkor Wat… So this is where we came with Zoe.




Pub Street in Siem Reap and ‘Entertainment”


On the left of your screen you will see within the Index list – ‘Phnom Penh and Angkor Wat’. That was written in 2011 and the Angkor section has four photos and notes from my first visit in 2004. Within the ‘Blog archive’, below the index also on the left of your screen, over the years there have been twelve visits to Angkor Wat along with their photos and stories.




We had our feet nibbled by fish in tanks; we ate and drank and bought souvenirs and we found a very good ‘crystal’ sort of shop run by a knowledgeable lady from Yorkshire.

At an enormous venue we ate from a gargantuan smorgasbord and watched traditional dancing with live music and singing.

As you have just seen – a very full four weeks with lots more to do, plans slowly unfolding and dreams becoming real. Love to you and everyone, from John.













February 4th 2018 – between guests.

In CategoryJohns blog

The  post about Lauren’s visit was just ten days ago (see -below this post)

 Mark, Linda and Zoe visit from Australia in a few days time and then Corrinne and Jon a few days after that. We are busy. happy and busy. I won’t be able to write properly while they are here so this post TODAY is a collection of our very recent activities mostly this month around the Guesthouse and villages. The end of today’s post is a collection of photos from Lauren’s visit in early January – taking five people to the Dentist 

so now – today’s post –


    “Fishing for food Cambodian style in our village – once a year and today is the day”.

This our Guesthouse dam 2000 cubic metres of water is pumped onto neighbouring fallow rice fields. I KNOW it is 2000 cubic metres because that is how much soil we excavated four years ago to raise our building area for The Guesthouse. We have never seeded the dam with fish – we don ‘t need to. Every wet season, fish arrive through the rice fields and irrigation channels and grow BIG. The fish, snakes, eels and frogs are groped for by hand as the water level lowers – a man with electric probes powered by batteries walks between fishermen, fisherwomen and children and electrocutes snakes. The following morning, this morning, the dam is again 60% full of water. (indeed now at the time of editing the notes I took a few days ago, it is 90% full).

In June, fish will start arriving into our 6 metre deep dam via the rice fields and the cycle continues. The fish are all salted for consumption over the next few months. All helpers are paid in fish, the rest are sold to non helpers     Look at the above photos and notes from ‘fishing for food Cambodian style’. An extra photo of a few of the hundreds of fish caught by hand and salted for several months of fish to eat.We had a party and roasted a number of the fish, placed inside a fresh banana tree stem (trunk) with lots of river bank herbs – it was delicious.

  We burn our rubbish. For a number of years I was President of a good Conservation Association in Australia. I know we should only purchase sustainably and recycle everything that we can. I understand about toxins that move into the soil and river systems…..

…So … We are in a remote part of Cambodia. There is no waste collection. 30 years ago here most products were either made of wood or plant material and people ate exclusively that which could be grown or caught. Our villages still practice the hunter gatherer model to a certain extent…. This is what we and all the surrounding villages do….. almost everything that is broken is taken apart and parts reused or the fan, radio, umbrella, chair etc is fixed. Glass bottles which are rare things find a permanent life in the village kitchens for storage. Aluminium drink cans are crushed, collected and taken to the city on the next visit for a small monetary reward. Broken and useless plastic and plastic material in anything that cannot find a new life in the villages is added to the monthly bonfire. We could bury our waste but that presents a worse problem locally. Farm animals roam every garden and property and rice, mangoes and coconuts are grown within a few paces of every home. Developed countries have a big problem with old TVs, computers fridges etc etc. We have no computers, fridges (I wish we had the power to power a fridge – they won’t sell us a gas fridge “you are too remote for us to visit for maintenance.” – Plastic in the villages is useless once it is broken beyond re-use and repair. So, for now, once a month when the winds can take the toxic smoke away, we have a bonfire. -The two photos above, are of a gang of girl helpers having turned small heaps into one. pile and then later yesterday the fire at twilight.


Getting specific now – on Febraury 3 – yesterday as I write – we planted a lot of mango trees (khmer word is Svey) and coconut trees (Doh) (yes, Doh). We also bought a selection of flowering shrubs, Maangos and coconuts from a travelling plant sales family in a tuk tuk with trailer. The third photo above is a ‘screenshot’ from Chanthai’s (x- to sart) Facebook wall – ‘Happy Day’ – as you can see.

 … and also yesterday a new bed and mattress arrived – we are sooo ready for the next guests.

  Our Guesthouse pig and her 14 piglets were born 3 days ago. We have moved mother and babies down the road to Chanthou’s mother’s home (early visitors will remember it well) We’ll move them back to the Guesthouse, six weeks from now. All piglets survived and mother and babies appear healthy..I’ve known a few pigs over the years and this one seems incredibly intelligent – she walks calmly close to me, looks directly at me and appears to be trying to communicate verbally.. I think that many pig owners would have similar experiences. (whether you own the pig or the pig owns you I’m not entirely sure)


The paragraphs immediately above are a screenshot from the EducatingCambodia Facebook Page that goes with the photos of clothes and boots.


My wonderful friend Zoe arrives here in just a few more days… and  – believe it not – these baby clthes, or maybe a LOT this time, are coming with her. The screenshot next to the photo of clothes with Zoe hiding behind them is from the equally wonderful Carrie , Zoe’s daughter. ( a lot more about Zoe and Carrie and all there loving friends during and after Zoe’s visit. Zoe is with us for a month.


I am writing this on February 3 and the concert (above) was last night in Avignon, France. (if you agree that I am “irrepressible” see Hilary’s article written in France, then let me tell you – Hilary is equally irrepressible or even more so, …maybe we’re twins…..

Bravo Ludvine et Helene. Merci. “au profit d’Educating Cambodia” (now surely no one needs me to translate that. Hilary – onward (as we say to each other.)


Brave Danni. 32 first time – see the notes.


I have frequently talked about how good my Dentist and her Clinic Pachem are.  I am looking at five receipts for work done yesterday to me, to Chanthou who had treatment last year, to Lauren who who also had treatment last year and to 32 year old Danni, our original Guesthouse keeper for whom this was the first time ever at a Dentist and for 18 year old Soklep (also first time at a Dentist.) The photos are of the ladies on the Clinic steps – meeting Dr Bophal in reception – work done for Danni and work done for Chanthou. (All the photos were taken without a flash with my Lumix Leica TZ80) The planning and organisation of the day was remarkable. We all had different chairs in different rooms and Dr Bopal and her nurses moved through us all. I don’t have photos of either Lauren or Soklep because I was probably being treated myself at the time. I’ll now work through the FIVE receipts to give you an idea of what we got for our money <3 Danni – Top incisor broken away diagonally in an accident. Rebuild perfectly – US$22.50 Chanthou – scaling and polishing US$10.50 two fillings – US$45. Wisdom tooth extraction –US$71.10 Lauren – Check up from last year + scaling and polishing – US$10.50 Soklep -Scaling and polishing US$10.50. Three fillings + repair a broken incisor (again perfect) US$45. John (me) Incisor and caninerepair (perfect) US$45. Scaling and polishing US$10.50 Lauren paid her own US$10 50 and I paid the remaining US$260 As I always say. The World’s best Dentist


and we work out the bill for everyone at reception. Thank you Dr.Bophal Uch and the Pachem Dental Clinic.

Love to everyone from our schools, our villages, our teachers, our families and most of all from all OUR children – John

Lauren visited during January 2018 – and what did Lauren do?

In CategoryJohns blog


It was Christmas 2017 when we last wrote and it’s now late January 2018 – Today is a big post with 90 photos and eight short videos. First though I’ll give you the introductory paragraphs which explain the way we work, what to expect in this website and information about donated money, without which we could not exist and are very grateful for: The “DONATE” Page is now as SECURE and as SIMPLE as it could possibly be:


1. If you use the Paypal button (Donate Page to the left of screen) we have your DONATION available to us in Cambodia within TWO DAYS of you clicking ‘send’. 2.The RAWCS  (Rotary Australia World Community Service) is now a ‘hyperlink” and that is through Rotary (obviously) and gets to us within a week.  The hyperlink is http://www.rawcs.org.au  (click on it and search for our project – The project name is  “Cambodia 55 2007-08″ …. we were registered as that name and number – International project – BEFORE naming it EducatingCambodia, so the above registration name and number is how to find us  through this RAWCS donation pathway- it will take you one minute to find the project. Its up to you which you might choose – PayPal or RAWCS – Members of Rotary tend to choose the Rotary (RAWCS)  link and that is partly because  – within Australia donations are tax deductible – for anyone.  ANYONE can donate through either the Paypal link OR the RAWCS link. The PayPal link is easier and just as secure but Rotarians might prefer the Rotary pathway. We will start with introductory notes for all first time visitors to our website: The paragraphs below, in italics, appear before every post. (If you would like to talk with us, the ‘Contacts’ Page is near the top of the Contents list to your left – along with how to ‘Donate’ and lots more.) “If you are new to our projects or haven’t visited this site for a while –here’s how it works: Whenever you open the site, first-up, you come to the very latest post or ‘blog,’ like this one – and through the years now, we have hundreds of posts and several thousand original photos, all with their own notes. We have over 1340 primary age pupils. Our aim or mission is to provide basic primary education – maths, reading and writing in their own Khmer language, Science and General Studies including History, Geography, health, nutrition and hygiene. Join us please; we pay absolutely no one, no one at all except Cambodian teachers. We have no office or computer staff or administration costs. We rely on your financial help to pay the teachers, maintain the buildings and buy the books. If you like what you see, please find the ‘Donate’ page to the left of your screen and try to help us. (There is also a Donors page which lists all our donors of $500 or above). There’s lots of advice on the site about what money can buy for our children.”

so now – today’s post –

It is an unusual post this month as will infold. Only partly, it is unusual in that almost all the photos have already appeared on both my own Facebook wall and on the EducatingCambodia Facebook Page. Another unusual aspect is explained in red (again) about half way through the post. BUT perhaps the main reason for any duplication is that many of my older friends never or rarely see Facebook. This website is promoted through Facebook, twitter, word of mouth and EMAILS!!

Lauren brings more much appreciated hats


We are a 100% Secular Government School. We are situated right next to the village temple on Government land. A good friend of mine is the ‘Abbot’ who called round to say ‘hello.’    They are a beautifully friendly group of teachers – Seven on duty for today’s morning shift. Remember there are two totally different ‘shifts’ every day. Half the children are early morning to early afternoon and the other half are afternoon to early evening.

As you know from the Christmas post, below this one) we made our December payment to our teachers and handed out hats from Our Lady of The Rosary Kindergarten in Brisbane – Today, above, lots more very welcome hats brought by Lauren from Australia. Luckily we had the perfect sized class for the number of hats…. and there are more to come when visitors arrive during February!.


The five photos above have just been given to me by teachers. The first is of a new teacher (replacement with details to come) and the rest are taken by Teacher Ren Soth who sometimes takes our photos.

 I’ll write more about Lauren’s time with us as we go along. The photo above was taken by Lauren and shows a simple small diesel powered thrashing machine that separates rice from husks. ( and one of our village girls)


Three photos and the video show us moving a small but very heavy Chicken house to the Guesthouse.Three years back you could find a much larger chicken house being moved by 50 people through the village – this time it’s through the village to us, and the chickens now live at rear of the Guesthouse.

Over the years there have been a number of photos and notes regarding all the travelling sales people – from bedding and beds to food, pots and pans and clothes.Today a small truck travelling through the villages with cheap plastic and kitchen ware.

Its wedding saeson. The crops are in and people come to their home villages for weddings and village parties. Cambodia is tied to its villages. The village elders control passports and all working and ID documents. People love their home village. All weddings and funerals happen back in the person’s home village. In the case of weddings, it is a maternal society with the new husband usually moving into his wife’s mother’s home.


Grabeh – water buffallo – are rarely eaten. They are the basic strong reliable workers of the fields and pullers of carts. (lots of grabeh photos from earlier years are within this site.)


Sorry for the poor photo quality of the above four photos but I think its worth posting them. Once a year every village temple and Wat (monastery) holds a HUGE fair – the nearest western comparison would be village fete cum harvest festival except this is much MUCH bigger. You can just make out the Beaudesert Rotary School sign in the first photo… we were the motor bike park. More than 5000 people came and there was a traditional show on stage – like a pantomime with local themes.

 one more fair photo. You can see Lauren in the midst of the group.

   Four photos to do, at least in part, with honey. Honey that we in the west buy in jars and comes from hives, is regarded here as FAKE HONEY.  In rural Cambodia they climb trees at enormous risk and break off pieces of wild honey comb. all parts of the comb are used and consumed and also used in ceremonies. it plays a large part in healing and promoting healthy re-growth.

In the other three photos above, while the baby’s mother is away working in a garment factory, the baby, held by her grandmother is protected by a twist of village beeswax her mother personally put in the hair before leaving for a few weeks in the factory. This belief is a spiritual belief and probably pre-dates Buddha (2500 years ago). Early visitors know the mother, Danni, our first Guesthouse keeper.


Do you like the jewelry that Seyneang made? Sreyneang aged ten is Rot’s daughter. Rot was Nang’s uncle – so making Sreyneang an aunt to Peery. (if you have no idea about this story or lineage, you wont regret reading ‘Nang’s Story” – see the index.)

Now have a close look at the bangle (or ring) – Sreyneang has made it out of interwoven drink can pull rings. Aluminium. (I am now the proud owner of several and of different sizes.)

A woman named Zoe ( many Beaudesert people know Zoe Fields) is coming here in just a few more days time along with Mark and Linda from Beaudesert. The above post is from Zoe’s daughter Carrie. Their  love of what we do in our villages has moved both to help us in big ways. I am looking forward to picking up Zoe, Linda and Mark at the airport on February 7. Corrinne and John arrive later.( Mark. Linda, Zoe and Corrinne are major donors already (see the Donors Page.)

My dear friends Hilary and Jean Pierre in Avignon are working so hard with their new Theatre (Le 9). If you look through the years Hilary’s theatre support for us from Antibes has made Hilary very much my partner and regards everything we do as OUR SCHOOLS. The astute reader may have seen my frequent use of ‘OUR’ .. they are not any one persons 1300 children – they are OUR children.. There’s another show coming up and adverts for it are already on Facebook and I’ll include news about THAT show here, next month.

We now move into Lauren’s holiday. From hereon there is nothing about the schools. So why put it all HERE??

I have brought Lauren and Chanthou from the village along with Chanthai, our Guesthouse keeper (used to be Danni – see above). Chanthai gets an opportunity to see of her own country!

We explore Phnom Penh and an enormous Fairgound and then four of the best days ever in the very far south-west corner of Cambodia – Koh Kong.

Since our beginning – visitors have explored Ratanakiri in the far north east, Angkor Wat in the north west, The killing Fields, the south east border regions, Kratie in the east and Kompongcham in the centre – and all those adventures are here on this website.

Basically the next photos and notes TODAY are SIMPLE BAIT. We want you to donate to our Schools and visit and after or before you make it to our remote villages let us take you on the holiday of a lifetime in Cambodia ‘The Kingdom of Wonder.”


Diamond Island (Koh Pich) is within the Mighty Mekong at Phnom Penh. It has a recent sad history just a few years ago while I was there. 350 young people were crushed to death trying to get off the island over a narrow bridge. I saw the aftermath and Calmette Hospital bravely trying to deal with a mixture of tangled bodies and survivors. The bridge is now completely replaced and Diamond Island is againn enormous fun….I’ve posted photos from the fairground before; do you like Lauren’s scooter dodgem car?

Before heading south west on a bus we called in at my all time favourite pharmacy. (video above). Actually I mostly took this video to show my Sydney Pharmacist daughter, Jenny, who will be HERE this time next year!

The map marks Koh Kong town with an ‘A’ with the Thai border at the lowest end of the line with the beach just acroos to the east and then south on the Cambodian side of the border. The Mangrove forests are right through an enormous maze of coastal channels and Ta Tai is an hour by tuk tuk and boat into the mountains – Cardaman Mountains.

On Facebook we have received more ‘likes’ for the photo above of Chanthou in red and of Chanthai and Lauren at a small waterfront table than any other photo we’ve posted. Our hotel for four nights was 100 metres left and past that bridge – the bridge to Thailand. That was our first evening.

.. and then, later the same evening on this side of the bridge to Thailand at our Hotel restaurant.


The following day we spent in the mangrove channels.


With my somewhat inadequate legs I am pleased that I made it up 100s of steps of an observation tower and took the elevated photos.


This is a closeup from the tower of Chanthai pretending to hide and saying hello and next, Chanthou and Lauren pretending to fish.


…and so into our boat and a cruise through the mangrove channels.

The three short videos above are I trust, self explanatory

The next day, we travel by tuk tuk across the bridge that WOULD take us to Thailand – but just over the bridge we turn sharp west and then sharp south to one of South East Asia’s best kept secret beaches ( I know where it is, so come here and we’ll take you). [The white hotel with the red roof is our hotel.]


…and so our our special beach. Enjoy the short video.


As I say, one of South East Asia’s best kept secret little beaches.

         The next day it was back over the long bridge but this time we continued to the border checkpoint with Thailand. The three girls went and I stayed in a cafe just inside Cambodia to wait for them.  Chanthou went over for a maximum three hours using her ordinary National ID. Chanthai had forgeotten hers and that could have stopped her crossing ….. Lauren should have paid US$50 for a Thai visa and another US$40 for a Cambodian visa (her visa expires on leaving Cambodia, even for three hours.) We solved all problems with US$5 which got Chanthai through on Chanthou’s ID and Lauren didn’t need a Vietnam visa for the three hours stay. All fine.


They returned – Lauren paid for a visa, everyone was happy with the markets on the Thai side of the border and they met me back in my cafe. All fine. (AND Lauren got the Thai stamps in her passport that she’d been looking forward to.) Lauren and Chanthai outside our hotel.


An hours tuk tuk drive north east from our Koh Kong town hotel and then a magical boat trip up stream into the Cardaman Mountains.

Enlarge some of the photos; it is a truly beautiful area and a wonderful day was had by everyone. There are a few very nice eco-resorts along the river banks.


These falls are the Ta Tai waterfalls and the area is known as Ta Tai. We moored the boat and clambered over rocks to the pool and big sitting rocks.


It really was a wonderful fourth day in Koh Kong Province. All the time there was magical.


… and returning to our hotel, this was our evening view. You can just make out Lauren in the first photo.

We hope you enjoyed Lauren’s holiday.

Please help us – donate a little if you can and visit our schools AND ‘The Kingdom of Wonder’  John.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

In CategoryJohns blog


Christmas Day this year will be a village Monday.

97% of Cambodian people are very happily Buddhist – 100% around here – nationally 1.5% are Muslim (Cham) and 1.5% Christian. I do the the whole Santa ‘thing’… teach the children Jingle Bells, put up decorations and lights and give presents. I love Christmas ANYWHERE as anyone who knows me knows! – if you like, we celebrate the mid-winter Solstice version with Santa added.

The photo above was taken on the Guesthouse balcony (see below for Guesthouse). I’ve only been here for a matter of days and have just managed to solve a lot of technical problems. TWO brand new but brilliant solar batteries. Money for every teacher. Got used to my new secondhand phone. Used my NEW Lumix Leica TZ80 camera for the first time in Cambodia (the old one died a slow painful death)…. and because my internet provider here has updated everything, I’ve had to get my ancient laptop (tablet) updated and a new dongle…. AND said a Happy “Hello” to thousands of Khmer folk.

On the new enormous dirt road (24 metres wide and I have yet to find out why) (Electricity is I’m told, again, coming “next year”).

Note the nine new ironwork cheese segments topping the wall. It was mandatory and I paid for it personally. ” There has to be a statement to protect visitors.” Check out the hats, lots and lots more later.

Please remember  – not one cent of donated money goes onto the Guesthouse in any way – it is however built for visitors,

On the inside of one of the outer walls of The Guesthouse. When graffiti is ‘art from the heart’.

This was painted for me and our January and February visitors. It reads, “Everyone welcome to Cambodia Happy New Year 2018”


All teachers are paid (paid twice a year June and December)!! THANKYOU to The Rotary Club of Beaudesert and Peter Greenwell. in the photo above I’m placing all the money into the hands initially of the Head teacher (and then to each teacher) – Sokken – in her office cum staffroom in The Chuor Ph’av Schools campus…. The second photo is of me preparing receipts immediately afterwards for signing. (in the second photo my camera is sitting on the table.)


I’ve shown literally thousands of photos of children and teachers over the years – today just a few. The first photo above is of So Nita, wonderful teacher, standing in the staffroom/Headteachers Office/Clinic. The second photo was at the end of the day (most children had already left for home), back packs ready to go.


AGAIN my luggage was packed to the point where not one more fat teddy could squeeze in. Thank you so much this time to my daughter Jenny’s friend Jade, for acquiring and giving some pretty incredible (they all are) teddy bears. Here mums are sorting them with village children in mind  especially as in who didn’t get one last time. (more a bit further on).


I’ve included the two photos above, repeated from December 1. I’ve brought with me the few sets of ‘Days for Girls’ (time of the month beautifully hand made and washable with instructions in Khmer script!! from the Wagga Wagga ladies) thanks Kathy – more on this after Linda gets here). Our friend from Beaudesert, Linda arrives in February and alongside Chanthou and some local mothers they can sort out issues, numbers, needs and… and .. anything.

Hats hats and VERY popular hats…. (and Jade’s incredible teddies).

A big thankyou to the Our Lady of The Sacred Heart Kidergarten in Kenmore Brisbane. There is a photo of me with the children and teachers in Brisbane in the December 1st post. You will see in that post that it is FOUR YEAR OLDS who are wearing the hats……


….. SAME HATS on Chanthai (Guesthouse Manager) two mums and a 22 year old man. Chanthou’s son Kumheang.


They Love their hats… again thank you Our Lady of The Sacred Rosary Kindergarten in Brisbane. (There’s another box full of hats waiting for the January and February visitors to bring)

Of interest to people who know the village and Schools. That green truck belongs to Warn our senior Builder. We have full use of it so he often parks it within the Guesthouse grounds. (note it is parked next to Peter Greenwell’s tuk tuk with its roof off for hard labour)

Today I have updated the ‘Gold Donors’ list. see Donors and how to Donate to the left of your screen. You are a Gold Donor if you have donated $500 or more. If YOU have donated $500 or more please check through the alphabetical list. IF I’ve forgotten anyone its good to know for history’s sake, plus an update is easy to do.

(I’ll insert here a personal plan of mine for 2018. In 1982 I performed a one man show in Theatres – I plan to do it again – all money raised will go to our Schools. I’ve had initial talks with a few friends – I was thinking of starting in France – I don’t know yet. A lot more on this idea soon – it is a one hour 45 minute show. I’ve started re-preparing.)

Meanwhile while children were parading hats and teddies Chanthai and Chathou were preparing fish from our dam for salting and storage.


There are 5500 photos within this website and 300 of them are of Peery (in green above taken today) and of her mother Nang from 9 years ago.

   and to the right, one of the saddest photos I’ve ever taken – Christmas 3 years later.

If you would like to read a passionate and incredibly moving true story this Christmas, open ‘Nang’s Story’ in the contents list. The 1st of these three photos was ‘Merry Christmas’ from us a few years ago – it’s caption read “we don’t do miracles in our villages – but maybe we do.” (the problem was we only managed that particular miracle five times).

especially from from OUR children – Merry Christmas from John.







Telling people what we do, have done and would like to do next.

In CategoryJohns blog




The “DONATE” Page is now as SECURE and as SIMPLE as it could possibly be:



1. If you use the Paypal button (Donate Page to the left of screen) we have your DONATION available to us in Cambodia within TWO DAYS of you clicking ‘send’.

2.The RAWCS  (Rotary Australia World Community Service) is now a ‘hyperlink” and that is through Rotary (obviously) and gets to us within a week.  The hyperlink is http://www.rawcs.org.au  (click on it and search for our project – The project name is  “Cambodia 55 2007-08″ …. we were registered as that name and number – International project – BEFORE naming it EducatingCambodia, so the above registration name and number is how to find us  through this RAWCS donation pathway- it will take you one minute to find the project.

Its up to you which you might choose – PayPal or RAWCS – Members of Rotary tend to choose the Rotary (RAWCS)  link and that is partly because  – within Australia donations are tax deductible – for anyone.  ANYONE can donate through either the Paypal link OR the RAWCS link. The PayPal link is easier and just as secure but Rotarians might prefer the Rotary pathway.

We will start with introductory notes for all first time visitors to our website: The paragraphs below, in italics, appear before every post.

(If you would like to talk with us, the ‘Contacts’ Page is near the top of the Contents list to your left – along with how to ‘Donate’ and lots more.)

“If you are new to our projects or haven’t visited this site for a while –here’s how it works:

Whenever you open the site, first-up, you come to the very latest post or ‘blog,’ like this one – and through the years now, we have hundreds of posts and several thousand original photos, all with their own notes. We have over 1340 primary age pupils. Our aim or mission is to provide basic primary education – maths, reading and writing in their own Khmer language, Science and General Studies including History, Geography, health, nutrition and hygiene. Join us please; we pay absolutely no one, no one at all except Cambodian teachers. We have no office or computer staff or administration costs. We rely on your financial help to pay the teachers, maintain the buildings and buy the books. If you like what you see, please find the ‘Donate’ page to the left of your screen and try to help us. (There is also a Donors page which lists all our donors of $500 or above). There’s lots of advice on the site about what money can buy for our children.”

so now – today’s post –

Today’s title, although obvious, doesn’t deal with WHO is telling people what we do and need.

The answer is anyone and everyone who hopes and dreams of our schools and villages thriving to the point of self sustainability.

We educate every girl and every boy from our 12 surrounding villages – the children are teaching their older siblings, parents and grandparents; there is a desire to do better; through our education and care we do not lose children to slavery.. much more to do. One day we WILL have health care, electricity and drinkable water but we are getting there from the position we were in ten years ago.

You are reading this so please take a big breathe and help us.. please YOU tell people what we do.. please help us to help OUR 1340 children. This is posted on December 1st 2017 and I return to our villages on the 11th – so lots of news and updates very soon!!


Spreading the word! And collecting hats!

We give a lot of talks – in this case to 4 year olds and their Kindergarten teachers in Kenmore, Brisbane. The children did understand that their surplus hats would be going to a poor country called Cambodia and we showed them on a Globe and I showed them village photos that they could understand and relate to. On December 11th these hats will be with me when I return to the villages and I am sure that the Our Lady of The Rosary Kindergarten children and teachers will genuinely gain a lot when they see photos that I will take of the hats with their new owners.

All the photos today are taken with my new Lumix Leica TZ80 camera and I am looking forward to using it back in Cambodia after December 11.


The two photos above and the following sixteen photos were all taken at the Beaudesert Rotary Club meeting held last Tuesday November 28. Most photos were taken by Lauren and I took the long shots showing whole tables of members. I’ve included all these today to give you some idea of what it’s like. We talk a lot mostly about how we can raise money to help people in need – like our villages! and we eat a meal! As we move through the photos I’ll make comment. Its serious business but done in a very friendly manner – as you can see. So first we have the two photos above: Lauren taking a selfie of herself and her friend Zara. On the right we see Geoff, tonight’s chairman, Susan, this years Club President and Lesley, this years Secretary and next year’s President. To the left we can just make out the back of Doug Drescher and the front of Peter Aldridge and Doug Lavers McBain.

  25 people (that night) all over age 18 sit around a rectangle of tables. Lots of people you see have been to our villages and so are well aware of our conditions and needs. That night I was ‘Sergeant’ and the Sergeant’s job is to try to keep the happy and informal evening on track and the bell (gong) is to TRY to stop people talking over each other ie. one person talking at a time please. Next to my empty chair is Lesley this years Secretary, next years President. Next to Lesley in what is really the centre of THIS top table is Susan (in green), this year’s President. We have a different Chairman every week – the person who introduces each item of business. That night it was Geoff who isn’t in THIS photo but is in an earlier one.

John (me) behind my gong (see notes above). three of us seem to share the Seargeant’s job through the year. The bottle of wine in this case is a raffle prize (lucky door prize).


Cambodia knows everyone in these two photos (above) Peter, Joy, Susie and Corrinne. (Corrinne rates a big mention in The District Governors Newsletter below)


We have two Rotary Exchange Students with us this year – Arantza from Spain and Nadoka from Japan.


I wont reintroduce me or Lesley again. Linda who is very well known in Cambodia, getting the last drop out of that bottle “if John’s going keep talking”! (Linda is mentioned again later re Days for Girls – below)


Mark Jackson who like Linda has been seven times to Cambodia.  At the end of the meeting Mark ran the AGM to vote in officers for next year….(blurred photo but not terribly so – good of his shirt though) and Lauren who is still taking selfies with my camera.


To the right of Corrinne is John Forbes Smith who also came to our villages a few years ago. In the mauve blouse – extreme right is Amanda Gillow a BRAND NEW MEMBER. Tonight’s chairman (see above) is Amanda’s father, Geoff Gillow.


Tamara (another well loved person in Cambodia) catches Lauren taking her photo. In the second photo we see last years President Shane valiantly ignoring both a large box of chocolates (which Lauren sells) and Jeff our Club Treasurer (who is probably either appealing for money or being funny – which he is – in a humourous way! We also get a glimpse of Denis.


This (above) is a photo of a Newsletter. It is the brand new DECEMBER Newsletter from The Rotary District 9640.  Rotary 9640 comprises the greater Gold Coast of Australia together with Northern New South Wales (just south of The Gold Coast). Beaudesert (my Club) along with 53 neighbouring clubs make up District 9640.

If you click on the photo (above) and enlarge it you should be able to read it easily. THIS entire website records EducatingCambodia’s ten year History – last month I summarised the ten years down to ten pages and today a wonderful Rotarian named Franz Huber has brought the entire ten years down to ONE PAGE! It is a photo so the links at the end don’t work but those links are about how to Donate and you can find that in many places including at the beginning of TODAY’S post AND to left of this computer screen as ‘Donate.”


Days For Girls. (the two photos above).

Kathy Wallace is a friend of ours from ‘Help Cambodia Wagga’ from Wagga Wagga – south of Sydney. Kathy sent me this box yesterday. It contains three beautifully made ‘kits’ for girls in the poorer regions of the world. Without going into any detail each bag is for a girl and her hygeine – everything is washable and even includes underwear and soap. Instructions have already been translated into Khmer (our language) and include detailed pictures. (One washable kit covers one girls needs.) ….

…. This is what we will do: Linda Jackson who is from Beaudesert, appears dozens of times through this website and has been to our villages on seven occasions – is coming to the villages in February 2018 and together with Chanthou and probably our headmistress Sok Ken will talk through what to do.. need? numbers? sizes? whatever – THEN I imagine that Linda will talk through our needs with Kathy in Wagga.



We finish today with this (above) sequence of five screen shots from Le9 Theatre in Avignon. Long time readers of this blog will know that Le9 is Hilary’s new Theatre in Avignon run by Hilary and Jean Pierre Lemaire. (Hilary was and is one of our biggest and original friends and Donors (see the ‘Donors’ Page to left of screen.)

Hilary’s website has both a French and an English version. As you read your way through these five screenshots (photos taken of the website itself) you will discover that:…

…”The Distinguished Soprano’, Sally Bradshaw together with ‘Veteran Actor’ (been acting for a very long time, I think it means!) Les Clack will perform “A Thousand Years of Christmas” accompanied by Genevieve Foucroulle on Piano.

You will read that the performers are foregoing payment so that OUR EducatingCambodia Schools Benefit.

The children 1340 of them know very very well of Hilary’s partnership with me and everyone concerned and are excited that on December 8 and 9 there are shows in France FOR THEM.. Quite a remarkable concept even for adults to get their heads around.

x Thank You Avignon x

Having successfully finished seeing Doctors in Australia I arrive in Cambodia on December 11 and so I’m certain that you will be hearing from me before Christmas.