I am please to update everyone on how the last 6 months has progressed at MHVc.
The teachers, Sophach, Lin and Cchunney continue to work hard with our students in order that they gain the best possible opportunities of learning English. We are the only NGO in our area that offers English and health awareness teaching. The Cambodian education office has started to issue English course books to rural schools to promote the learning of English. They are Grade 4 books but there are no available teachers. Consequently our services are much in demand. Our only one drawback at present is the economic climate in the villages. Many of our families are working going off to work in Thailand with some of them taking the children with them to work in the factories or placing them in the care of an elder sibling or grandparent. As a responsible organisation we follow up these cases as soon as we are aware and try to ensure the students continue with their studies and we consider their overall welfare in the cases where they are not permitted to come to school and have to work at home supporting other elderly family members.
One of our early students, Nia Menir who is now studying at Prey Chrouk Senior school has been given permission to hold 2 classes in English per week for older students. Her teachers and School are impressed with her English ability and actively support her teaching.
This February we demolished and constructed a new fireplace for Prasat Primary School to be used for the cooking of breakfast for those students unable to eat at home. The students at MHVC have now been given permission to be part of this initative that is funded by the World Food Programme. The old fire pit was of earth and cement skim. Now it is a substantial brick and steel construction that accommodates all the cooking needs.
We have reviewed our teaching curriculum and now teach a programme of, Core English and grammar, English Literature and Health Awareness. In October 2014 (the start of the new school year) we will include cultural studies.
To improve the quality of our teaching practice Teacher Lin is attending an Intermediate English Course (Cambridge University) at SE Asia University, Siem Reap on weekends. The course begins March 2014. We
hope that Cchunney will start a further English course under similar arrangements later this year. In both cases we actively look for sponsorship to offset the course and book costs.
We have formed an association with Vandavilla guesthouse in Siem Reap who advertise our NGO and programmes. When possible invite visitors to act as volunteers. They also have two donation boxes in place. Any MHVc volunteers staying at Vandavilla receives a generous discount off the daily room rate. I use this guesthouse and can confirm it is high quality. low cost boutique type with air con, swimming pool and includes breakfast. (www.vanavilla.com)
Oann has obtained provisional agreement for a 10,000 litre water filter system to be constructed and put in place at Prasat School. This will provide a washing trough and 12 water taps for the students. The costs are being covered by Homes for Habitat Organisation. We look forward to its full approval.