Hope Global Blog

First Days in Cambodia

The HOPE Team - Monday, June 29, 2015


"We've arrived safe and sound in Phnom Penh and have hit the ground running. After a good sleep and a decent breakfast, we headed out by Tuk Tuk to Toul Sleng Museum (S21). It was important for the team to gain an understanding of Cambodia's history so as to bring perspective as we related to the people while we're here. A hard, yet valuable experience. 

From there, we went to the Russian Markets - a truly Cambodian experience! In discussing the marketplace, as soon as one of the veterans on our team asked, 'does anyone usually get claustrophobic?', I knew we were in for a treat! Think of Paddy's Markets combined with the busyness of the show-bag pavilion on Good Friday and the humidity of a tropical rainforest! Not to mention the smell in the 'fresh food' section. All in all it was a feast for the senses and another great taste of culture here in Cambodia.

After a good lunch...we decided to head off...in search of stationary and goodies for next week's Teacher Training Conference. Michelle and Cathy were amazing hagglers as we slowly but surely emptied one unassuming stationary supplier of a considerable percentage of her stock. I think it's a really wonderful philosophy of HOPE: Global to purchase locally so that we are building into the economy here.  

When we arrived back at our hotel, Kit and Rheam (directors of a Heart for Wisdom School) joined us to share their vision for next week's conference. This meeting was so much more than a time for sharing next week's vision! Theyare inspiring! They shared honestly about the education situation in Cambodia and where their school fits in it. They shared about the struggles they're facing leading a team of people. They shared the victories they've enjoyed. I was particularly energised by the news that the teachers that are enrolled in the conference are hungry to learn from us. I was energised by this but also a little overwhelmed with the responsibility that lies before us. It is however, reassuring to know that in a God-ordained way, a lot of their areas of need just so happen to be areas we have prepared to share about." - Katie

Photos: Toul Sleng Museum (S21)


"I am simply reminded of God's faithfulness today. This morning we were able to gather as team and the word over today was 'REST'. Personally, I was very grateful for this. Some of us on team have been very weary from travel, personal issues and other specific circumstances at home. We were blessed by the words of life from the Word of God and coming together to encourage each other. After our breakfast together we travelled to Good News of Jesus Christ church to gather with Pastor Srin and Vannear and their community...we gathered with the church community to have a meal consisting of chicken in broth, rice and whole fish. 

In keeping with today's word of REST, after coming back to our hotel some of us went grocery shopping while others connected with family and friends. Some of us ladies indulged ourselves in the $9 sixty minute massages and $5 pedicures - I must admit I definitely rested during that sixty minutes!

At 6:30pm Abraham, a long time friend of HOPE: Global met us for dinner and was able to share his heart, his triumphs and trials, along with listening to our stories. He is a great man, a brilliant interpreter, a faithful servant and it was an honour to share a meal with him. We are looking forward to spending more time with him and his beautiful family on Wednesday.

We are excited and prepared for the week ahead...we are praying that God's will be done while we are here and we cannot wait for more chances to experience His love and faithfulness while on this beautiful journey in Cambodia" - Shenai

Photos: Children at local church and Cambodia Education team members 

All Photos by Light & Shade