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Ary Village: A New School Program in Cambodia

2018 is just getting underway, but we already have wonderful news to share about our third and newest Believe in Me school in rural Cambodia, located in Ary Village. What makes our Believe In Me Ary Village school a very exciting project is that it is in partnership with the local Department of Education. Several months ago, we learned about an old school building which had fallen into disrepair in a region hit hard by poverty. This area has a similar demographic to both our Rangsei and Sokhem Village schools in that many of the children are “left behind” when their parents travel into Thailand searching for work. Malnutrition and illiteracy are sadly far too common.

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Real Results in Sokhem Village

Just over a year ago, LWB-Cambodia began working in remote Sokhem Village, near the border with Thailand. The rural communities of western Cambodia continue to face significant challenges decades after the tragic genocide by the Khmer Rouge. Extreme poverty is rampant, and human trafficking remains a critical issue. The families in Sokhem Village struggle to […]

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Keegan and Kolton’s Battle With Leukemia

This October, I had the privilege of meeting two very special boys in our Cambodia Medical program.  We met Keegan and Kolton this June when both boys were very sick.  They were quickly diagnosed with leukemia, a cancer of the blood cells, which was particularly affecting their eyes.

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Safe Haven Foster Care in Cambodia

Earlier this year we introduced our newest foster care program for children in Cambodia who had been trafficked or abused. Our Safe Haven program quickly filled with children who had lived through the unthinkable, ranging in age from babies to pre-teen. Each intake form we received had a child’s story that broke our hearts, and we’ve all been so grateful to the compassionate people who’ve stepped forward to sponsor a child into a secure foster care placement. One of the first issues we faced, however, is that psychologists and counselors are few and far between in Cambodia, and the limited ones in practice are all located far from the rural region where we are working.

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Heath’s Desire to Learn

Last month, one of our Cambodia team members met a young boy named Heath. Heath is eleven years old and has severe cerebral palsy. He always wondered what was inside books and wanted to learn to read so badly. However, Heath has never been able to attend school due to his special needs. The very first thing we arranged for Heath was new crutches to help him with mobility, but then we began talking with his family about how it could become possible for this bright little boy to finally go to school.

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Fighting Hunger Through Hot Lunches

Approximately 75% of children in Cambodia are chronically malnourished. We’re working to change that number through our hot lunch program in our Believe in Me schools. Ruby tells us that she eats as much as she can for lunch at our Believe in Me Sokhem school because she doesn’t know when she will have the opportunity to eat again. It’s heartbreaking, isn’t it? Yet this type of food insecurity is quite common in this region of Cambodia.

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Final Day of the 2017 Cambodia Medical Exchange

It’s our final morning to say “Hello from Phnom Penh and Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital.” We’re happy that all our patients continue to recover well, and that meant a few more discharges were in order. Kenzie’s grandma reported that her granddaughter slept well through the night and completely regained her appetite, so it was time for our team to say goodbye to this beautiful little girl. We’re all wishing her a future filled with love, health, and laughter.

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Third Surgery Day of the 2017 Cambodia Medical Exchange

Hello again from Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where our medical exchange team had another productive day.  First up was morning rounds — a great time to check on all the kids. For those of you who may be new to cleft operations, we’ll just say that recovery from palate surgery is often quite painful. Simply put – it hurts. During this week in Cambodia, we’ve been amazed at how quickly most of our patients have bounced right back after surgery.

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Second Surgery Day of the 2017 Cambodia Medical Exchange

It’s Day Two of surgeries here in Phnom Penh, and we’re happy to report that all of our little patients are doing well. Avery is understandably still very sore from her lip repair yesterday, but she looked great during morning rounds. One of the adorable little boys having surgery today is Silas, who will be turning four in just a few weeks. His parents are rice farmers, and he’s the baby of his family. Silas’ mom saw an advertisement that our team would be in Cambodia this week and knew right away that she needed to bring him to see the doctors.

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First Surgery Day of the 2017 Cambodia Medical Exchange

Greetings from Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where it’s a balmy 90 degrees and 94% humidity!  The warm temps didn’t get in the way of some really successful surgeries today though. Little Avery hitched a ride on our team’s bus this morning, as she was one of the first children on the schedule. She had no idea that today her life was going to change in an enormous way.

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