Sep 10, 2021

"I am Covid-19 positive"

Ms. Sitha, Al-Anon1 growth group
Ms. Sitha, Al-Anon1 growth group

       Since we have been living with this tough situation of the Covid pandemic for a couple of years, It’s hard for us to meet our group in person. For youth learning center has started and closed again and again by following the curfew of the government and serious situation. Through these circumstances we have learned and experienced it in some way, We knew what we can and we do keep our mission go on. At the first start, we’re had a zoom meeting class with students to keep connected and learn together, There are three things that YESIC still working on during this pandemic, Growth groups, self-study, and covid pandemic relief. 

Growth group:- besides closing all English classes, computer classes, and other two meeting groups in the big number of students, we just have a few growth groups (Safe community, Al-Anon1, and Al-Anon2) which can meet in the person in class under 15 people to join. Unexpectedly when our growth group has started a few weeks one of our group members Ms. Sitha she was positive with covid…What we can do in this situation are: to stay close to encourage, help, listen, support each other, and Praying for her. 

Self-Study-For our teachers and volunteer even if we don’t have classes to teach, we still have time to work on our lesson plans and self-study to improve our capacities to work effectively when we will start classes again.

 

Story from our student, Sitha:

My name is Sitha. I’m a member of Al-Anon1, a growth group for those who are victims of the alcoholic in their family, at DOVE organization.

August 11th was an unforgettable day of my life. The day that my Covid-19 test came out positive. I felt terrible and guilty for causing my family trouble. Not that I got sick, be quarantined, and left my parents taking care of the whole family and me, but also they had to go through discrimination from my neighbors and had to be stuck at home, couldn't go out to work either. 

I was mentally breakout and felt sorry for everything and for everyone I came in contact with. I made calls to everyone I met to inform them to keep their eyes on their health and keep their distance from their family and friends for a while. I was terribly blamed by one of my coworkers for being caught by this virus and for being careless to meet with her and may cause her and her family trouble too. Some of them got upset and discriminated against me. But some of my friends showed me empathy and encouragement and helped me not going through this alone. My friends at Al-Alon1 paid a few visits to my house by saying hi from the gate and leaving food and fruits for me at the gate. I can't imagine how I would fight this fight alone with such acts of kindness and love. 

While I was worried about my poor parents, my heart was screaming and begging God that my poor sick older brother will not get infected from me because he was born with a chronic illness and was not expected to have lived this far. So I thought he won't survive this virus. My nightmare became real, after I came out from two weeks of quarantine my brother got tested and it the result was positive. My parents and I burst out crying. He could not walk then. He prepared to have Orthopedic Surgery for maybe 2 or 3 months ahead but now he has to fight with Covid. I lost control of myself at this point and it hurt my feeling so badly. I was scared to imagine how worst the virus may infect him in the next few days since I experienced it myself. I also worried about our financial stability.

This problem taught me a lot of things. At the end of the day, only your family will remain by your side and support you no matter how much you screwed them up. True friendship only got proved by going through hardship in life. The last lesson that I learned from this event is to not underestimate any kind of virus. Not for my safety but also for the safety of those I love and care about. Be alert and careful. 

Last, of all, I would like to say Thank you to my Al-Anon group and all Dove’s staff for their caring heart and the words of encouragement, and for checking up on me often time during my breakout. Love you guys. "

 

 

 

Growth Group meeting online
Growth Group meeting online
Growth Group fieldwork
Growth Group fieldwork
Growth Group fieldwork
Growth Group fieldwork
Outdoor meeting to a protecting forest
Outdoor meeting to a protecting forest
Jun 1, 2021

Relief Packages Distributed

Greeting a family
Greeting a family

Since February, Cambodia has been hit by a serious Covid-19 outbreak. The number of patients in Phnom Penh quickly surpassed existing treatment facilities. A city-wide lockdown began April 14. During the lockdown, families were ordered to stay at home, which means that they couldn’t work. Poor families have been greatly affected, because they usually only make enough money to buy enough food for each day. They do not have any savings or food stockpile as a buffer. Middle-income families have also been affected. Many businesses have cut salaries or closed completely. Usually, people would rely on their family to help, but everyone is experiencing the same crisis.

The same has been true for the Mission Dove Cambodia students and volunteer teachers at the Phnom Penh YES IC Learning Center. Most of them are from families that needed immediate assistance. Dove staff contacted students to determine their family situation and prioritized those who had lost income, had many family members and/or worked at factories. Even though the city-wide lockdown was lifted May 5th, some areas of the city still have restrictions. Some factories have reopened, but only 50% of their workforce is allowed.

With your generosity, care packages have been distributed to 70 families that included 10kg of rice, dried fish, vegetables, eggs, dried noodles and other staples. To keep the distribution as safe as possible, we spread their visits to the Dove office over two days, April 27th and May 5th. One family in one of the most affected areas of the city received two packages. The home internet upgrade for two Dove staff has enabled them to facilitate three support groups for 26 total students during this outbreak. Six Dove volunteer English teachers have continued online teacher training and received stipends. 

Interview with Konika* on May 5th

My name is Konika. I’m 29 years old. I live in a small rental house in the Boeung Tumpun area of Phnom Penh with my parents and my three children. I am also 7 months pregnant. I used to work in a factory and my husband is a construction worker. Unfortunately, my husband and I had an argument recently and he has left us.

Now, because of the lockdown and my pregnancy, I can no longer go to work. I have no income and can’t afford to buy food or pay for my medical bills or my children’s education. My parents are both very old, but they still work and now my family has become their burden. One of my brothers is a tuk tuk driver, and the other is a factory worker. Sometimes they will help us with food, but they can’t do very much because they are also trying to take care of their own families. Right now, neither of them has a job because roads and factories are closed. So, we have no income at all and are just trying to get enough food to survive. I’m so worried about when I have my baby and that I won’t have money to get care at a hospital or even afterwards. I can only hope that the COVID outbreak will be over soon so that my brothers and parents can go to work again. For now, I just want to say a thank you to Dove YES IC and the people who have been generous enough to give us food and other groceries. This relief package will help us hold on for just a bit longer.

*-Name changed for privacy.

In partnership with other groups, Dove has also provided care packages to families in a Chak Angre Leu neighborhood in Phnom Penh, where one of the Dove staff lives. We found this neighborhood hadn’t received any assistance yet. The staff talked with each family to understand their situation. Some work as garbage collectors or cleaners, while others are unemployed, elderly or widowed. On May 2nd, 40 families received packages, and the remaining 57 families on May 11th. We were happy that some of the Dove YESIC students volunteered to help with the second distribution.

Care package contents
Care package contents
Dove volunteer repacking eggs
Dove volunteer repacking eggs
Loading motorcycle
Loading motorcycle
Chak Angre Leu
Chak Angre Leu
Bicycling home with care package
Bicycling home with care package
May 13, 2021

Dove's Forster Growth and Healing for 200 Cambodian Youth Report

Hello, GlobalGiving’s project report department

Here is our report:

Title: Growing Up at DOVE Youth Learning Centre (Yesic)


Earlier this year, on April 1st,  2021, the Cambodian government put Phnom Penh and Takhmau Cities in curfew and then locked down the whole city of Phnom Penh, Takhmau, and some other cities most infected with COVID-19. The lockdown caused a lot of stress and undue pressure on our students as they were forced to stay home all day long, coupled with the overwhelming boredom of online classes that they must attend. Staying home may sound like a mix of rest and boredom for most people, but for Cambodians, especially for our students, being stuck at home in a 30 square meter apartment with many other siblings and not having enough food to eat is just a miserable experience. 

There were over 170 youths involved in Dove’s program every week before this recent spike. There are still three growth groups meeting weekly on Zoom: Leadership Club, Men Group, and Al-Teen. Volunteer teacher training is done online too. All 6 English classes, two computer classes, a counseling program, Art class, a Reading Club, Drop-in Center are temporarily closed until we hear from the government letting us know it is ok for us to meet again.  It appears that this will not be too soon, maybe later this year, or even next year. 

When a student shared in one of our Growth Group Zoom meetings about his situation, he burst out tears. His classmates comforted him and they cried together. 

 

Meet Our Student

Greeting! My name is Phearun. I am 21 years old. I have two brothers and I am also in year fourth of Western University. I am working in one of the coffee shops in my area. My working time from 7:00 AM to 12:00 PM. After leaving my work I like to hang out with friends talking, playing a sport, and playing guitar. One of the places that I want to say is the YESIC center. It is a safe place and is the place to spend my spare time learning new things. I can talk with teachers over there. I get some good advice for my life. I would say it is safe and sound for me. I also attend the short seminar organized by MISSION DOVE: Leadership Club, Al-Teen and Men group. My attitude, mindset, living style, and creativity are changed through those seminars. Especially my mental health is good. I met a lot of people who are good-hearted and matured. Their heart full love and sharing make me feel secured to come here, in YESIC and I feel like home to come to YESIC. I get to know YESIC through my friend in my school. I have come to YESIC since I was 13 years old until now, I am 21 years old. I learn a lot from here and I used to be a volunteer in YESIC of Mission Dove Cambodia. I used to visit the poor people in slum areas. I used to teach my life my story to those who come to YESIC. I also help teach guitar to student who comes to YESIC because I gain my knowledge from YESIC so I decide to share what I have from YESIC with my friend and the people I know. I want them to know what I learned from YESIC.

Finally, I want to see DOVE still continue to have some more new classes for the next generation and also for those who come to YESIC to play some sport and learn the useful thing for their lives. This place is a safe place full of love and sharing of their mental health, experiential learning, and gets the inner healing. That is all I want to say. I just share the experience I have with DOVE to you all, thank you.



Attached are some photos of our project.

Peace,
Sarady, Dove Director

 
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