Hope and Human Association (HHA) is a small, Cambodian registered NGO located in the village of Sanbourn, situated out in the countryside about 30 minutes outside Siem Reap. One among the many things that impresse me about this organization is that it was started five years ago by an Australian woman living in Cambodia. That is not unusual. What is unusual is that through a dedicated and concentrated effort, this organization is now completely Cambodian run and staffed. This is San Thai, the Director now in his first full year of leadership responsibility — with the training wheels off.
HHA is a highly community based organization. Among the many programs they sponsor are:
• A sewing school for approximately 10 women each year
• English and Khmer lessons for over 100 young children, thereby preparing them for a healthy start in government schools.
• Workshops out in the surrounding villages to address important topics such as domestic violence, child raising skills, effective agriculture, and the like.
• Micro-loans to aspiring villagers seeking to start their own small businesses.
With the help of our generous donors, our SE Asia Foundation has helped HHA by providing new staff uniforms, teacher salaries, a wall to protect the classrooms from the noise and dirt from numerous trucks passing by throughout the day, a new tile floor for their outdoor study area, additional books and materials for their library, and some general operating expenses.
Here’s a picture of the library improvements we funded and a view of the countryside where HHA is located.
Even though HHA prides themselves on now earning over 25% of their annual budget from their own efforts, they still need donations to continue their fine work for this rural community. $880 will sponsor a woman for a complete 10 month sewing program — and $400 per month would go a long way towards covering their ongoing operating costs.