By contributor Diane Frost –
Do you ever dream of what is possible beyond your doorstep? Corrugated steel might not look like a beginning in the developed world. But, in Prey Veng, Cambodia, steel is hope and self-sufficiency. One look at the breathtaking vistas of rice paddies and it is easy to see that these women have united, in one year’s time, over what can build lives as their natural talents gain the right of education via Access For All, a campaign of Rose Charities International.
Twenty inspirational young women, who were referred to Access For All, dream of making lives for themselves out of the skills they gain from working in the household. The household is special too, because the province of Prey Veng offers few choices to women living with challenges that their disabilities have handed them. Yet, they successfully strive to learn to use computers, become apt administrators and disability awareness ambassadors, all the while being valued members of a close-knit family of ladies rising above poverty.
Referred to Access For All by their own loving families and non-profit global organization (NGO) Veterans International, and a fine combination of support from donor dollars, grants and volunteerism the goal for these women is self-support.
Rose Charities’ plan is to educate women such as Chanry through scholarships to Chea Sim Kamchay Mea University where she learned the discipline of accounting and be able to run a business. A project team leader for Access For All now, Chanry said would like to work for a NGO upon completion of her accounting degree.
They attend high-school and University classes majoring in such pragmatic subjects as English, accounting and urban development. Having recently built a new bathroom for $700, the mission would benefit from an in-house teacher of information technology, Japanese and English, and all the more laptop computers, the better than the lone two in use in the office.
These women’s dream of being a part of society, in their homeland where they would have otherwise languished, and the virtues of work and education are providing answers to the challenges of disability and poverty in the gains of fellowship and self-confidence.
Joining the circle of celebrating their brightest New Year yet, they are welcome at the table, at last.