Promoting Good Health and WASH for Children

by Action Change (Formerly GVI Trust)
Promoting Good Health and WASH for Children

Introduction 

Many students from the community have limited access to resources that keep basic hygiene. Our project aims to provide our students with basic kits with these resources inside and lead regular workshops to teach the importance of teeth brushing and hand washing, and how to do this

Report 

Our current target is USD1000. Thank you to those who have donated and we are still working hard to meet our target and still need to raise USD900. Once we have reached our goal we are hoping to provide hygiene kits to all of our students and teach them how to use this and why it is important. Moreover, we want to extend our reach to children of the community who are not our students. All community members lack the awareness, knowledge and resources involved in basic hygiene so we would like to extend this initiative as much as possible into the community.

Thank you for your support

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Dear Supporters,

 

Covid-19, the virus that sent 2020 and the whole world into chaos. At the beginning of the year who could have ever predicted what would unfold as the months started to go by, and even now I don’t think we can really be sure of what will come. Hundreds of countries have been impacted by the virus, and unfortunately Cambodia hasn’t escaped the wave of destruction.

 

On the 27th January Cambodia reported its first case, followed by  a 2nd on February 13th. When the 3rd case was detected on 7th March in Siem Reap, schools acted quickly with all centres closing in the province. Initially they thought the closure would only be for a couple of weeks, but March showed the true severity of the virus across the world and 11 days later across Cambodia further restrictions were in place. This included; closure of all schools, museums, cinemas, concert halls, bars, and karaoke establishments, any large religious gatherings were prohibited, and 5 countries were suspended from entry into the country. March 26th/27th saw the land borders to Vietnam, Thailand & Laos close, and with the suspension to follow of all visa free entry, e-visas and visas-on-arrival for all foreigners. The month came to an end with the total number of cases at 109. 

 

Due to the country acting quickly, imposing additional measures such as 2 weeks of quarantining on arrival, and also testing upon arrival, Cambodia has been successful in keeping the cases relatively low with no fatalities. Today there are 273 cases, with the majority being from people arriving into the country and so are being automatically quarantined anyway. The great news is that 225 have made a full recovery, but the country knows it has to tread carefully in order to successfully beat this virus.

 

On the week we were meant to be moving to Siem Reap, covid instead had other plans for us and by the end of the week the decision was made to put our hub into hibernation. We had already started working with our new partners in Siem Reap who had been incredibly welcoming to us, and were so excited to see our projects really come to life with our volunteers. Now with the school centres being forced to close, and health and safety restrictions in place preventing our partners from supporting their communities in their usual manner, a lot of people are struggling to gain the usual help they vitally need in day to day life. 

 

With Siem Reap being thrown into an economic crisis, and the serious implications of an international tourism ban, people are having to do all they can to put food on the table. During a pandemic where healthcare should be at the forefront of people’s priorities, a lot of people in Siem Reap aren’t even in a position to even consider healthcare with the costs involved. The basic health care projects we have worked on within school centres on toothbrushing & hand washing are struggling to be continued in homes, with toiletries such as toothpaste being unaffordable. We know that as soon as schools are able to open again, our support to be able to continue with projects like this will be even more crucial.                

 

Even though this past month there has been progress, Cambodia and the world has a long way to go before we are out of this very difficult time. We know Cambodia is a very resilient country but the implications of this virus will no doubt be seen for years to come. We look forward to when we can return and help our partners in their missions, but even through the coming months we know that now more than ever supporting their work is incredibly important. 

 

We need to ensure that the healthcare projects we support are still able to transform the lives of hundreds of people across Siem Reap. We understand that it is a difficult year for a lot of people around the world, but hope that if anyone is able that they will look to make a difference in the healthcare sector, and donate to a fund to promote very high standards of healthcare within the Siem Reap community. 

 

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the generosity everyone has already given to us already, but please do continue to support us as we can make it through this difficult time together! 

 

With Gratitude,

 

Cambodia Health

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The counselling room
The counselling room

Dear Supporters,

 

GVI Cambodia is proud to say we really did start off 2020 strong, by finalising a crucial project that will help support the health and wellbeing of many in the Kampong Cham community. 

 

The last quarter has been a very excited one for us, as after spending the previous quarter fundraising we were able to bring our projects to life! One of them was funded through our healthcare Trust fund which was to help renovate a counselling room space for our partner BSDA. We know that ensuring everyone is able to have good mental wellbeing is paramount for their health. This is why we ensured we conducted this project to the highest standard so that we could impact all the students who come to BSDA into the future. 

 

After meeting with BSDA to discuss ways in which we could best support them, they decided that instead of helping to renovate one of their classrooms, we could help impact more community members if we were to support them in renovating a counselling room for them. They already have a room that is called their counselling room but it has cracks in the walls, broken tiles, flaking paint, and only a few bits of old furniture which aren’t suitable for a counselling room. BSDA told us how no one ever uses the room, but it is such an important space for their students as a lot of them come from very difficult backgrounds. 

 

We absolutely loved the idea of helping to renovate the space, so set about making plans and pricing up initial repairs. BSDA were shown our plans, which they agreed would work well, so we set about the initial task of preparing and repairing the room. Groups of our volunteers went in to initially help scrub down the walls, which proved to be a very messy task as the material kept flaking off! When this was complete, cracks were repaired before we set about painting. Some many have got more paint on themselves than the walls...but the room was soon ready for the help of a professional!

 

We then had a builder come in to rip up all the tiles and level the floor, as previously it had been sinking in some areas. We chose a lovely wooden tile to go down, but ran into an issue when we were 1 tile short and the shop had discontinued the design...Luckily we overcame the hiccup and the room was ready to be furnished. As locally we couldn’t source the items we needed, we went to the capital city of Phnom Penh to buy sofas, armchairs, pillows, plants, picture frames and all sorts of different items to turn the room into an inviting space. 

 

We are incredibly proud of the result, and want to give the biggest thanks to the support and donations people so kindly gifted us when we fundraised. We wouldn’t have been able to achieve this without help, and couldn’t be more grateful to those who donated, shared the fundraising link, volunteered their time towards these goals and all other support we’ve had along the way. 

 

This project has definitely left our partner with a resource they can use long term, which has ensured that we have created something sustainable within the community. This project has also helped us work towards the  SDG’s; 3.Good Health & Wellbeing, 5. Gender Equality, 10. Reduced Inequalities. 

 

This quarter we have also continued to use our Trust fund to support our incredible staff member Kimyi. He has been an huge help with us as we started to finalise our time in Kampong Cham, and prepare to move to Siem Reap. As a staff member and friend he really does go above and beyond to help support us, and amongst our whole staff team we always say that Kimyi is someone we really feel blessed to work with! Unfortunately as Kimyi has his main job, family and home in Kampong Cham he won’t be moving with us to Siem Reap. Kimyi though has assured us it is not a goodbye at all, it is a see you soon as he will come to visit and we will stay in touch. He is also committed to helping GVI with anything we may need in the future, which just shows what an amazing person he is! Thank you to everyone who contributed to this fund, and directly helped support Kimyi.

 

As we look to the future we can reflect on all that this fund has achieved, and know that we can achieve similar greatness and more in Siem Reap! We will be back operating in Siem Reap soon, and know that now more than ever it is crucial that we use this fund to promote very high standards of healthcare within the community. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the generosity everyone has already given, but please do continue to support us as we can continue to achieve so much together!

 

With Gratitude,

 

Cambodia Healthcare

Far from a comforting space
Far from a comforting space
Scrubbing and repairing cracks then painting
Scrubbing and repairing cracks then painting
Scrubbing and repairing cracks then painting
Scrubbing and repairing cracks then painting
New room after renovations
New room after renovations
New room after renovations
New room after renovations
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Dear Supporters,

 

The first quarter in 2020 will be GVI’s last in Kampong Cham, as we are moving our hub to Siem Reap. We have decided to move our hub so that we can attract more volunteers with a well rounded project, and Siem Reap offers a lot more opportunities to really develop and strengthen our women’s empowerment, health care and environmental programmes. This means that over the next 3 months we will be ensuring that our current partners are well supported through the transition, and we will be working with 2 of them on development projects. 

 

One of them is to work with one of our local partners. After a recent meeting with them, they decided that instead of helping to renovate one of their classrooms, we could help impact more community members if we were to support them in developing a counselling room for them. They already have a room that is called their counselling room but it has cracks in the walls, broken tiles, flaking paint, and only a few bits of old furniture which aren’t suitable for a counselling room. They told us how no one ever uses the room, but it is such an important space for their students as a lot of them come from very difficult backgrounds. We have already started collating ideas for the room, where we will initially make the repairs and then re decorate. It is a very exciting project for our staff and volunteer team to be involved in, and we are excited to work closely with them to make their ideas a reality. We know that ensuring everyone is able to have good mental wellbeing is paramount for their health. This is why we are ensuring we conduct this project to the highest standard for that we can impact all the students who come to them into the future. 

 

I can’t thank you enough for your continued support to our work here in Cambodia. We could not achieve what we have been without your help and I don’t think I can express enough just how grateful my team and the community here are.  I hope you continue to enjoy hearing about our progress, as we have a lot of very exciting things planned for our Healthcare programme when we reach Siem Reap! 

 

With Gratitude,

 

Cambodia Healthcare

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Dear Supporters,

 

Since the launch of the health program, we have come across many obstacles. We have been trying to work out a system how to keep our students’ toothbrushing kits organized and clean. The systems we used previously took a long time to distribute which meant we would lose time from our English lessons. Also, the way the toothbrushes were stored meant we would have to replace them more frequently than usual since the students would often mistakenly use someone else’s toothbrush. After trying several methods, during the last quarter we have hit one very important milestone. We purchased plastic toothbrush holders for every student. Every holder was then labelled which made distributing the toothbrushes quick and easy. Additionally, toothbrushes are now easy to store and they stay clean for longer. 

 

Another obstacle we keep encountering is the negative attitude of our students towards brushing their teeth at the beginning of the classes. Although this attitude is present in all age groups, it is particularly strong among our teenage students. We have faced strong refusal, avoidance and many excuses, all for the purpose of not brushing their teeth at the beginning of the class. In order to start changing this attitude towards dental hygiene, we have organized two workshops during the last quarter. Both of the workshops focused on vividly presenting the negative effects of poor dental hygiene. First workshop was held at the beginning of August and our students’ attitude improved but then we started noticing resilience again so we held another workshop at the beginning of September. The materials used for the workshops were adjusted to the students’ age and involved lots of visual accounts of poor dental hygiene. Since the last workshop, the attitude of our students improved again but we realize it is a constant struggle and we will continue working on developing positive attitudes towards dental hygiene.

 

This year there has been a spike in dengue fever across Cambodia. Thus we prepared and held a workshop on dengue fever in our Power club. The workshop included the symptoms of dengue fever because lots of Cambodians still aren’t familiar with them and won’t seek medical treatment until symptoms escalate. We also dedicated a big part of the workshop to provide advice on what to do in order to prevent dengue fever. The reactions of our beneficiaries were very positive and they described the workshop as very useful.

 

In Cambodia, there is very low recognition of mental health issues, although it is estimated that 40% of Cambodians suffer from mental health and psychological problems. The availability of mental health care institutions is very low and some topics involving mental health are still seen as taboo. In September, we organized two workshops on this issue: one was “Coping with stress and emotions” and the other “Women’s mental health”. Both workshops were held both at our Power club and at Cheung Kok Eco-village where we also run educational and women’s empowerment programs. During the workshops, we have witnessed strong positive reactions from our beneficiaries with strong initiatives to include more workshops on this topic.

 

Thank you for your continued contribution to the GVI Trust Health Program in Cambodia. Your efforts will help us to continue working on the health issues we have already recognized across Cambodia. Furthermore, your efforts will help us expand our work to reach more people and tackle issues we haven’t dealt with so far.

 

With Gratitude,

 

Cambodia Health

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Organization Information

Action Change (Formerly GVI Trust)

Location: London - United Kingdom
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Tyrone Bennett
London, London United Kingdom
$254 raised of $1,000 goal
 
4 donations
$746 to go
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