7 Cambodian students supported by the PGH Schoolfund, have successfully completed another year of their university program at Mekong University and International University, and two of them gradudated this year, with degrees in International Relations and Business Management. When they stood proudly this year, as young women in their graduation gowns, to receive their degrees, a long path had come to a crucial milestone, which started many years ago, when they came to live at the SCD Children’s home in Phnom Penh as very young girls. Both of them were already able to secure paid positions, and will continue to pursue their ideas and dreams. Congrats ! – PGH Studaid updates coming soon !
In October 2023, owed to our great love for animals, we decided to add the „Voice for Animals“ program to PGH’s activities. Here we support projects, organizations, or individual people whose passion it is to defend the rights of animals, who protect animals and care for their wellbeing, doing so many times quietly on a shoestring budget as „unsung heroes“, or as legal warriors defending the animals‘ rights of ethical treatment and protection. If we provide financial help and/or dedicate time and resources, we have a detailed insight knowledge of the specific local situation, organizations and people involved and know that our help will go to where it is best applied to help the animals. Our first project „Care for Feral Cat Colonies“ began in October, and is located in Andratx, Spain, where – as in many other countries and regions, due to lack of funding, increasing costs, and a harsh Corona lockdown, that under penalty of law restricted TNR (Trap Neuter Release) activities for a while entirely, the current feral cat population in many communities have reached a peak. This caused deteriorating conditions within the colonies and suffering of the animals. Our partners are the local veterinarians, animal protection organizations and local volunteers and care givers who have been doing the best they can, but are facing limited funding and resources. As the situation is very urgent, our approach is to help the care givers in charge of a feral colony to upscale TNR activities, by providing funding for trapping, feeding and to help the veterinarians by covering some of their costs. In addition, we support the facilitation of a public-private collaboration with the city, that enables an ethical long-term management of healthy cat colonies. Since October, we were able to support the trapping, neutering and releasing of 55 feral cats, from a colony. To bring the colonies‘ population and health back to balance, much more work needs to be done in the coming year, and we are grateful for any support we can receive. If you want to help us care for the well-being of the feral cats in Spain, please read more about our activities and goals here.
Fortunately, the coronavirus pandemic was no longer the dominating theme of the year 2022. The cambodian students sponsered by the PGH programs were finally able to attend classroom lectures again, and for the most part life returned back to normal. In 2022, two PGH Schoolfund students graduated from PSE Vocational Training School in Phnom Penh with Degrees in Hotel Front Desk Management, and Film Making. Both were able to combine internships with their vocational schooling and are able to enter paid positions in the next year; 7 other schoolfund students have successfully completed another year of their university program at Mekong University and International University. Also in 2022, six Studaid students have successfully earned their Bachelor’s degrees and another two students completed their Master’s degrees. Since the beginning of the Studaid program in 2018, a total of sixteen students have gained bachelor’s degrees and three have earned Master’s degrees, a total of 41 students have been benefiting from the support of the program, since inception. Studaid newsletter can be downloaded STUDAID Annual Report 2022.
Despite a lot of ups and downs during another challenging year marked by covid restrictions, we can report a lot of good progress for the year 2021: PGH Schoolfund was able to enroll 4 more girls from the former SCD Childrens‘ Home in University programs, including the Nursing Program at International University (IU). The students show great dedication to their studies and despite the covid-related limitations are making great progress. Two students enrolled in vocational programs (hotel management and film & media productions) at PSE were able to start internships, and are doing great. All together PGH Schoolfund and Studaid have been providing educational support for 54 students so far and the group of alumnis is slowly growing. While visits and traveling to Cambodia has not been possible for a while now, all progress is due to a reliable cooperation between our local representative Kosal and the Swiss team. Many thanks to everyone and to the donors who make it all possible ! You can view the latest PGH Studaid news here STUDAID Annual Report 2021_e.
The Covid pandemic caused significant disruptions and challenges this year also in Cambodia, and thus to our students which are enrolled in various programs. For many it meant a significant disruption of their study progress and a slow adaption to following classes only remotely via online attendance. For many students the lockdowns meant they could not stay at their dorms, and had to return to the provinces, which made study access via online further challenging. PGH supported the students as much as possible with their own laptops and mobile devices, as this was more essential than ever to stay connected and allow continued progress. You can read the annual report of PGH Studaid here.
PGH studaid program, lead by Norber Lanter and Chris Ramseier, was started in March 2018 www.pgh-charity.org/studaid and has already 16 Cambodian students on university sponsorship. Thank you Norbert, Chris and Kosal for awesome work ! You can view the annual report of PGH Studaid here.
In 2018, our key priority has been to assist SCD’s remaining children to obtain their high school diploma, and transition each of the young students, who still called SCD their home at the time of its closing, to suitable new educational programs and accommodations. PGH Schoolfund works with established and vetted local educational partners, who offer good quality vocational programs, university studies, or dedicated special courses. We select individual educational programs with and for each young Cambodian who receives PGH sponsorhip, to fit their talents and interests, and support them throughout. Our dedicated focus with the PGH Schoofund has already provided great results over the past year.
4 students are enrolled at PSE in vocational programs
2 students started studies at Cambodia Mekong University
1 student started bakery training at KSK Cooking and Bakery School
6 students received study support to pass their high school final exam
Please note that PGH’s educational funding provides opportunities directly to young Cambodians, which they would otherwise not have. Our support makes a direct, meaningful impact on an individual basis, one student at a time. A special thank you goes to our local PGH representative, Mr. Kosal Nhek, who has been invaluable to our work locally.
We plan a significant addition of sponsored students in 2019! Thank you for helping PGH in providing better chances for better lives through education to underprivileged youth in Cambodia.
We are happy to announce the inauguration of the studaid program with PGH cooperation partners Norbert Lanter and Christoph Ramseier. Cambodia has a large number of talented high school graduates who do not have enough money to pay the university tuition fees. Often they don’t speak English at all, or do not speak enough to read English textbooks and to pass an exam. Although the students can earn some money with low level employment, to finance the cost of living and their studies, they have to work so long hours, that there is hardly any time left for studying and learning English language. In order to provide ways out of this „vicious circle“, with the Studaid program we have set ourselves the goal of supporting underprivileged students in Phnom Penh in achieving their study goals. The financial support (sponsoring) includes tuition fees at the university, english courses, books and school materials. Please read more at http://pgh-charity.org/studaid/ and www.studaid.org. Thanks to the program founders Christoph Ramseier and Norbert Lanter for this great initiative and we look forward to the cooperation.
We are happy to report that PGH Schoofund was able to approve the first funding for an educational program with the great help of our new local PGH representative, Mr. Kosal Nhek. Sina, a former student of the SCD Childrens Home Phnom Penh, has been accepted as a student for a Technical Vocational Diploma in Food Production, by the School of Hospitality and Tourism of PSE – Pour un Sourire d’ Enfant (PSE) Phnom Penh, Cambodia https://pse.ong/en. Sina will live on campus of PSE and study for 2 years to graduate from the program. We have known Sina for many years. Sina has a great talent for Yoga and during the LHTF program discovered his passion for cooking and healthy food. Sina’s goal is to combine yoga and healthy food in his future professional work and PGH Schoolfund will support him to the best of our abilities. Classes for Sina at PSE will start Sept 1st 2017. Several other projects and programs are currently in evaluation, stay tuned.
The SCD Superfood BBQ Restaurant, founded in 2014, was for 3 years part of the PGH Learn How to Fish Program, and offered a business learning case and opportunity for internships parallel to high school to young students from the SCD Childrens Home. The goal was also to reach profitable operations and provide additional income supporting the operational costs of the childrens home. Due to organizational changes at SCD and limited resources, the restaurant will be closed. It was a valuable project which brought a lot of joy to the SCD kids during the past three years, and definitely worth it. We learned a lot and thank everyone from SCD for their efforts.
PGH has made good progress in establishing our new structure and activities in Cambodia for PGH, and we are grateful for the cooperation with Mr. Kosal Nhek, who is our new official local PGH representative. Kosal has previously worked as an English teacher and speaks English and Khmer fluently. His support is invaluable and we are grateful to have Kosal’s assistance on board, to go forward with our activities for PGH Schoolfund. PGH supports funding of education for disadvantaged children, young men and women, to support their future independent livelihoods and the possibility to become positive pillars for their local community.
PGH Schoolfund will also support the continued education of qualifying remaining students from the SCD Childrens Home Phnom Penh as they prepare for their high school degree and help them in their transition as they leave SCD. Whether supporting a qualified school or supporting an educational program for an individual, we conduct thorough due diligence on the project, program or institution. Kosal is permanently based in Phnom Penh, and assists with the local administration and research, and monitors and reports status updates on all PGH local activities. Several educational partner organizations, programs and projects are currently in evaluation with PGH Schoolfund, stay tuned.
In the past 7 years, PGH provided funding support to a variety of projects in cooperation with the SCD Childrens Home in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. We are happy to say that, we could do a lot together, achieved meaningful milestones and learn interesting lessons, in a challenging environment. At is peak SCD was home to 140 children from impoverished backgrounds. Many children received support from SCD to grow up in a safe and healthy environment and have exited the Childrens home as adults with functioning roles in society. We are grateful for these efforts provided by SCD over the past years. As the city of Phnom Penh has been expanding rapidly into the rural area where SCD was originally founded, SCD management has decided over the past 2 years, to wind down its operations in Phnom Penh, and focus in the future on its small school in the province Kompong Speur. The existing organization in Phnom Penh will remain active as long as the remaining students live there in preparation for their high school degrees or transition to other campuses and schools.
Since last year PGH has decided to focus its activities in Cambodia exclusively on funding education of disadvantaged children, young men and women via the PGH Schoolfund. PGH Schoolfund will also provide funding for remaining students at the SCD Childrens Home Phnom Penh, as they prepare for their high school degree and as they transition to other campuses and programs. Stay tuned for updates.
PGH School Fund was founded to provide education for children from disadvantaged backgrounds. The Schoolfund initially focus on provide education, accommodation and living expenses to disadvantaged youth in Cambodia, via selected local cooperation partners providing quality courses, vocational programs and university education.
In May 2016, 10 students from the SCD childrens home completed PGHs first pilot “Learn how to Fish” program. The program funded a series of two courses for a group of teenage students from the SCD Childrens home, to support vocational education and future job placement. Part I was a 5 months cooking course at Linna’s Cooking School in Phnom Penh. Part II was a 7 months accounting and computer course, at the Vanda Institute, Phnom Penh. This practical education pilot project was meant to give the high-school students a basis for considering employment in the restaurant business, after high school. Parallel to the courses, the kids all take internships at SCDs restaurant „Superfood BBQ“ (funded by PGH), where they assist in managing the restaurant one evening per week. As this was a pilot project, we believe it was a good learning and we will monitor the results. The ability to manage computers will bring immediate advantages to kids seeking job placement after high school. Computer classes are still marginal to non-existent in Cambodian public high schools, hence we will continue to support such parallel custom selected courses in combination with internships, to provide a very practical hands-on way of help.
After finishing the 5 months cooking course at Linna’s Cooking School, the 10 „Learn How to Fish Participants“ from the SCD Childrens Home started in November a 7 months accounting and computer course, at the Vanda Institute.
www.vanda.edu.kh. This practical education is meant to give the high-school students a basis for considering employment in the restaurant business, after high school. Parallel to the courses, the kids all take internships at SCDs restaurant „Superfood BBQ“, where they assist in managing the restaurant one evening per week. The restaurant and educational program courses was funded by the PGH- Marc Sola Learn How to FishProgram. A big thank you to all donors for their support !
Thanks to your support, the old, dysfunctional sewage and draining system of the SCD Childrens Home could be replaced. 136 cement pipes were used each at 1 meter length, to lay proper piping throughout the front of the school building, including the girls dormitory and the area around the vegetable garden. This also connected the sewage from the dormitory to the public sewage, which improved the hygene facilities at the girls dorm. It also assists to drain the rain waters during monsoon, and hereby protects the organic vegetable garden which supplies food. Thank you Chris and Lars, for making that happen !
During our visit at SCD from July 2 – July 5th, we could also check progress on the SCD farm project in Kompong Speur province. Land was purchased a while ago to plant fruit trees, and vegetables, and breed cows, with the intention to establish an income source supporting the childrens home.
The SCD Restaurant which was funded by PGH`s Learn-How-to-Fish Program and opened in November 2014, was established to provide additional income to the childrens home, internships to the older SCD students, and a place to learn and practice restaurantnd management skills, The restaurant may also provide jobs to SCD students after highschool from SCD after high-school. So far the restaurant could gather 6 months of experience. The restaurant has become more known in its area, and serves an average of 10 – 15 tables per evening, with most business on Friday and Saturday. A group of the older students from SCD take turns in 1-day per week internships, and have fun learning various tasks such as customer service, food preparation, cash management. During our recent visit in July 2015, green beans harvested from SCD`s organic vegetable garden were served at the restaurant at the first time. During our visit, several steps were discussed with the management team with the goal achieve profitability of the restaurant yet this year, such as increasing the marketing outreach, adjustments to the menu, and possibly add one evening of entertainment per week. We thank our donors to Marc Sola`s Learn-How-to-Fish program, who enabled us to fund the restaurant. Stay tuned on further updates to come !
As part of the first Learn-How-to-Fish Program on restaurant management, 10 teenage kids from SCD Childrens Home have started a 5-months cooking course with Linna?s Cooking school in Phnom Penh. The tuc-tuc transports the kids every Sunday to the cooking school and picks them up again several hours later. During the course the kids learn in total over 40 different recipes of how to prepare healthy nutritious meals. Soon these new expert cooks will contribute to expand the menu of SCD`s restaurant with some of the meals they learned to prepare. The classes are organized very well and managed very professionally by Linna, who learned her cooking skills mainly in Japan. The kids have fun attending the classes. Thanks to the donations by Marc`s Sola, we were able to get the first part of this pilot program on the way as of June. Stay tuned for updates !
Our current initiative supports SCD Childrens Home in growing healthy organic vegetables on a regular basis that will contribute to the children’s food supply. Any surplus will be sold on the market and in SCD`s restaurant, and supports SCD’s operating costs.The premises of SCD include unspoiled land that has been infrequently and partially used for growing vegetables. The first step consisted in building a roof to protect the crops from heavy rain. A qualified expert in organic farming set up the garden and looks after the crops. As part of PGH’s vocational training program LEARN HOW TO FISH the organic vegetable garden also provides a learning experience for young adults interested in farming as a future field of work and raises awareness on environmental issues and organic farming practices. A selected group of SCD’s kids learns the real, hands on practice and also receives theoretical training. Subjects that are being taught are: how to plant and grow various vegetables (lettuce, cucumber, tomato, green bean, water convoulus, egg plant, radish, shallot, amaranth, bitter ground, chilly, water green), making natural compost fertilizer, and natural pesticides. The first results are impressive, first vegetables are being harvested, and integrated in the meals for the kids at the childrens home. All organic waste is collected and mixed with cow dung to create compost, and the kids go to class once a week to learn skills and methods for natural gardening. We are happy with the progress so far, and thank our donors for the support ! Stay tuned for updates !
The PGH Learn-How-to-Fish Program® initiated by Marc-Andre Sola, could raise ~CHF 23,000.—this year. This enabled us, together with the team from SCD in Cambodia led by Chan Norn, to open a small restaurant called “Superfood BBQ” in Phnom Penh. The food selection is based on Cambodian preferences, by combining fish, meat, vegetables, rice and noodles into healthy meals. Customers grill their food themselves, right at their table. In addition, a Tuk-Tuk was purchased for transportation to and from the restaurant.
Earnings from the restaurant are expected to contribute to the SCD Children Home`s operating costs and the business will provide training and job opportunities to young adults from SCD. Thank you sincerely to all our donors, who made that possible!
Happy to report that thanks to the support of our donors, a total of CHF 21’874.80 has been raised for the program since inauguration last year. This program supports better education and entrepreneurism for disadvantaged youth in young people, and to encourage overcoming adverse circumstances with business creativity.
The mango tree farm has so far been an important support to the SCD orphanage. It contributes nutritious fruit to the daily food supply of the orphanage’s 100 children and 13 staff members, and provides income to SCD from selling the mangos at the local markets. However, the volume of fruit needs to be increased to make a bigger impact on SCD’s financial operations. The directors of SCD and PGH have approved a budget of USD 15’000 to expand the mango tree farm on SCD land, and implement necessary irigation via ponds, canals and piping. – Thanks to our donors we could contribute USD 3’500 so far, and work has already started. To complete the work swiftly we want to reach the full fundraising amount by May 2014. Helping us achieve this goal, means helping to strengthen the orphanage SCD Cambodia in its goal toward self-sustainability. – THANK YOU FOR CONSIDERING A DONATION AND BEING PART OF OUR EFFORTS!
We are happy to announce, that as of year-end 2013, we have raised CHF 8’248 for the „LEARN HOW TO FISH program by Marc Sola“. The mission of this initiative is to encourage underprivileged young people in Cambodia to become independent entrepreneurs by developing business ideas which fit into their community. The program promotes creativity, leadership, self-initiative and independence. It is based on three pillars, education, motivation and entrepreneurship. By providing basic business education in form of a 6-months course, share experiences of successful people who overcame adversity, and by micro-funding the winning business ideas developed during the course, the program’s participants will „learn how to fish“. The pilot program will be implemented in the SCD orphanage in 2014. Teenage children from the orphanage and surrounding villages will be invited to participate. WE WELCOME DONATIONS FOR THIS PROGRAM and the funding of winning business plans! THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
When it rains, it pours in Cambodia! Often this heavy rain can destroy delicate sprouts, and wash out compost soil of carefully planted vegetable gardens. The vegetable garden built on orphanage land was recently expanded. Thanks to our donors, we were able to provide funding of USD 2’000, to build the structures and roof needed to protect soil and plants from destruction during monsoon rains. This enables the year-out growth of self-grown vegetables, which contributes to the supply of nutrition-balanced food to the 100 kids and 13 staff members of the SCD childrens‘ home.