Vichet is 15 years old and comes from Ansong, one of the communities included in the project called “Targeted educational strategies for pro-poor community development Cambodia” in the province Prey Veng. Currently he is in grade 8 in the city’s communal school.
Some years ago, Vichet’s life had taken a turn for the worse. When his mother got sick, his father had to sell his land and move to Phnom Penh in order to work as street vendor selling drinks. Yet, the income of the father was not enough to feed Vichet and his siblings. Vichet was hence forced to start working after school to improve the family’s income. He and his friends dug soil out of the ground to sell it in the city. This activity provided him a salary of approximately 5000 riel (1,25$) a day. While working hard, little time was left to do homework. Soon his grades deteriorated and his motivation for school was almost completely lost.
This changed in 2012 when Vichet met a volunteer of the local youth club, created by a AEA volunteer in 2012, convincing him to come back to school. To make this decision possible, the network donated some chicken to Vichet’s mother. Since then she can sell them every second week on the local market, stabilising the family’s income. This year, Vichet himself became a volunteer of the youth club. Now, every day after school he tutors children in his village. Also, he is the responsible for the reading activities of the youth club.
“Without the youth club, I would have never made it thus far. I will study hard to thank the association” said Vichet in an interview with AEA. In the future he wants to study medicine to become a doctor curing people in his village.