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teaching children about personal hygiene
Whilst we've entered an era where we realize institutionalized care is not as healthy for children growing up as we would have liked it to be, it served its purposes in providing shelter, food, education, emotional and social support for many Cambodian people. Among our youth leaders are Socheata, Sinam and Chomrong who grew up in Hope Village, Prey Veng, a children's home by Operation Hope Foundation (Singapore). They are currently studying in University in Phnom Penh, the capital city and working at various companies.
Last December, they chose to go back to Hope Village to teach personal hygiene and healthcare to the children as well as to organize a Christmas program and give out presents. Seems like a regular missions program but the impact comes from the fact that they stand as role-models for the children and demonstrate leadership, gratitude and service to the home that took care of them and shaped their future.
It's great when foreigners come and put up a program or teach a workshop but it's phenomenal to have local people who once were in their situation, graudate from school of life and come back to tell the next generation of children, "Your life can be as good as mine. Thank you Hope Village." They tell their story through their personal experiences, something you and I will never understand, never having lived through their moments and they express that graitude by going back to visit, support and encourage the staff and their "parents". It's their turn to say that they've all grown up now, how can they give back? How can they help and stand wth the organization to better the lives of the children? How can they use their skills and talents to work together with the organization to improve?
Personally, I'm so touched by their gesture. We take for granted the teachers that taught us, the seniors who showed us life lessons, the friends who came alongside us through thick and thin and sometimes even our families who loved us unconditionally. A true test of a person's maturity and character is their ability to express gratitude by investing their time, energy and emotions to suppport and encourage the ones who sowed into them and to partner them to build the next generation. I believe that character and values are more caught than taught - it happens in everyday life, when the going gets tough, when disappointments and setbacks happen, in the coffeeshop and group outing moments. We're committed to building people of integrity, honesty and always thankful.
Alive Ministries organizes workshops and trainings for young people in office skills, soft skills and vocational skills. We then give them opportunities to use these skills to lead outreach and community projects of their choice, helping their disadvantaged neighbours. Do email Melissa at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to partner us and impact Cambodia. Thank you for teaching, sharing, hanging out or giving financially.