Kasumisou Foundation

To assist the poorest of the poor by providing essential living support to families and children impacted by extreme poverty and/or HIV-AIDS in Cambodia.
May 28, 2013

Building dreams....what's new

Building dreams:   The challenge of trying to make dreams come true.

Matching Grant Opportunity:   Please consider supercharging your donation, by  making a donation on June 12, 2013 from 9:00am Eastern Daylight time during the GlobalGiving Match day. Global Giving will give " Super Star" projects such as ours a 50%  match on  donations up to $1,000. 

We have not given up on our goal to  help rural Cambodian students fulfill their dreams of attending college, although over the past  6 months we have only raised $ 160  in total for this project.

None the less, we have taken the plunge to help these students . Had we not done so, more than likely our four students would have drifted to meaningless work  for rock bottom wages  and lost their opportunity to realize their dreams of attending college and building a successful  middle class life.

Here is a brief update on our students:

All four of  these  students came from our Rural Assistance Program in Bapnom Province, Prey Veng, Cambodia and all four were active members of the student dance program sponsored by  Kasumisou Foundation at Babnom  High School. The student dance program  provided instruction in traditional Cambodian dance free of charge  to any student  who wanted to participate.

Additionally, these four students  participated in Kasumisou Foundation’s “ Green Champions Project ” a student- led program to reforest local areas. Students created nurseries for tree seedlings, transplanted the seedlings along a long  treeless dusty road ( about a mile long) commonly used as a main  pedestrian and bicycle thoroughfare. Our students  tended the  young trees, watering them and  protecting them from destruction by  foraging live stock.  The Green Champions project   objective is  to provide trees for  shade by  reintroducing  pioneer native  tree species . These trees will also  create improved biomass to help to enrich depleted soil and  will encourage birds and other animals to re-establish a presence . These factors will combine  and lead to the long term  improvement  of  an area that had been subjected to decades of land degradation and mismanagement.

As a result of their academic achievement and their participation in these two rigorous programs , our  four students had been selected as those most likely to succeed by the teacher overseeing these programs at Bapnom High School.   These four students not only graduated from high school, but showed their skill, talent ,  self-discipline and leadership  through their continuing  participation in these two programs.

 

Born Laiy ~  Female, Age 19

  • ·         Royal Scientific Institute of Health- School of Nursing
  • ·         Paid $850 for one year’s tuition and books
  • ·         Shares housing near the school

 

Nhes Sor Sdoeurn ~ Female – age 19

  • ·         Vanda Institue of Accounting
  • ·         Paid $ 450 for tuition, books,supplies
  • ·         Shares housing with several  classmates.  Helps with accounting,  dance instruction to younger   students  and  marketing at the  Champey Academy of Arts, a Kasumisou Foundation project.
  • ·         Receives $ 70  per month to cover food, share of rent, personal expenses

Chhoun Lean You  ~ Male – age 22

  • ·         Norton University-English & Communications
  • ·         Paid $ 450 for tuition, books, supplies
  • ·         Lodging is sharing a  storeroom at Champey Academy of Arts   with fellow student Hun Serey in exchange  for helping out with tasks at school including class instruction  and marketing.
  • ·         Receives $ 70 per month to cover food, personal expenses

Hun Serey ~ Male – age 19

  •           Norton University – Business Management       
  •           Paid $450 for tuition, books, supplies
  • ·         Lodging is shared storeroom at Champei  Academy of Arts with fellow student You  in exchange  for helping out with tasks at school including class instruction  and marketing.
  • ·         Receives $ 70 per month to cover food, personal expenses

 

If any of these four  students wish to return home to visit their families, the flat bed  trucks that serve as shared “ taxi” will take 4  to  6 hours each way and cost $ 14 round trip.  The students ride bicycles to school and they are responsible for all of their personal expenses including clothing.

 We hope that once you have a chance to learn more about our students, that you too, will want to become a part of their amazing success story. 

Thank you for your generous support of our efforts to help these students!

Barbara & Mark Rosasco

Apr 24, 2013

A new chapter begins...Progress report

A work in progress !

Champey Academy of Arts ( CAA)   started dance classes  at our new location   in  Phnom Penh in January.  Champey is the  Cambodia name for the tropical  plumeria flower.  Our new location is centrally located and is  just a  short walk of one block to the Royal Palace, the National Museum and Royal University of Fine Arts.

Our inaugural class included a group of approximately 20  young girls age 9 to 16  from a shelter for abused and formerly trafficked children in Phnom Penh. Now just three months later our  Champey  Academy of Arts  ( CAA) l continues to take shape. 

From a just a handful of children, our classes  have  now expanded to include morning and afternoon sessions with attendance of  about 20 to 30 students per class.  Instruction is presented 6 days per week. Not only does the program of dance and music  at Champey  teach children about their rich cultural heritage, it keeps children off the streets during their free time. Cambodian children attend school for a morning session or an afternoon session, and this alternates each month, so non-school hours are filled with a rigorous curriculum of classic Cambodian dance.  The classes are filled with children from NPOs as well as neighborhood  kids whose parents recognize that Champey provides opportunity while helping to assist  the challenge  of idle children who are often left unattended while parents work.

As school holidays in late summer  approach,  we will be working to develop additional activities, including drawing,  to enrich and occupy these children.

Classes are offered free of charge.

Mark is in Cambodia this week to evaluate progress to date and plan for the coming months.

Again, all of this is possible because of your generous  support.

Stay tuned for more news!

 

Barbara Rosasco   

Mar 29, 2013

Mark's recent trip to Cambodia

Inside the FSP: The Important Role of  Reviews and Assessments

Mark arrived home from his recent quarterly  trip to Cambodia on March 13, where he had spent   a week reviewing our programs, including the AIDS Patient Family Support Program  ( FSP) , which helps  indigent families impacted by extreme poverty and HIV/AIDS.

From the beginning of our FSP in 2000, we have taken a long term approach to keep families together , to prevent trafficking and to keep  kids in school to  help to  break the cycle of inherited poverty.   Over the past 18 months, we have conducted an extensive and careful  review of each family’s current status, stability and potential for financial  independence outside our program. During that time we identified 8 families who over the past 6 to 12 months are  gradually being phased out of our care.

Several families  are  headed by single mothers with AIDS who are  now be in a position to resume independent living. These are mothers who have benefited from our support for as long 10 years and who  now have raised, educated  and  proudly  launched their children into a stable lower middle class life.  Their  children, now grown,  are  in a position to care for and support their mothers.  For a few others, we felt  that they should be gently moved out of our programs assistance arena over time for specific reasons.  For example,  one  family was asked to leave due to  a  serious violation of our rules, by  seeking support from two organizations  at the same time without permission from either , or put differently, “ double dipping” .  Another is a  mother who  was removed from our program  because  she ran away after stealing money  from  her neighbors.

We view these periodic  long term assessments as a vital  and natural part of the FSP.  They free up scarce resources  and it  honors our commitment to our donors that we will carefully monitor all expenditures to be certain that funds are used, to the best of our abilities,  optimally and ethically.

One of our mothers recently passed away quite unexpectedly, leaving a 12 year old daughter who was temporarily cared for by other members of the FSP while our home care coordinator worked extremely hard to find a placement in a reliable institution.  We will continue to monitor her situation .  One of our great successes is that our Home Care Team has worked hard  from the very  beginning to foster a community attitude among our families  sharing scarce resources, emotional support as well as help and friendship.

Mark reviews the status of each family every quarter and any decisions that are made are implemented carefully so as not to undo what may be years of slow progress.  Structure and discipline are applied with  large amounts of understanding, accommodation and compassion.

We hope that this progress report has given you some insights into the operation and challenges that we face. We are grateful for your support and  it is our honor to  have our efforts supported by you. We could not do this without you!

Barbara & Mark Rosasco

 

 

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