Friday, 10 June 2011

Lighthouse Orpanage

After visiting the Killing fields and the Prison we visited the Lighthouse Orphanage. It was a 15 minute Tuk Tuk ride from our hotel. The Orphanage is situated in a very poor part of Phnom Penh and we got some very strange looks from the cambodian people as we passed by them. They are just so unfamiliar with seeing western people that they just look at you and i noticed people staring especially at my feet!?

The orphanage houses 98 children aged from 3 to 18 years old, which have been rescued from poor families or have been abused for various reasons. The orphanage does not recieve any funding and relies of donations from locals and tourists to keep surviving.


Rice and cooking oil

I went shopping for essentials needed for the children, i got Soap, Toothpaste, Toothbrushes, combs and hairbands. I probably spent no more than £15 and it was the best money i have ever spent. At home i would spend that sort of money without even really thinking about it, but in poorer countries the money can go such a long way and really make a difference. On the way to the orphanage we picked up a sack of rice, cooking oil and some fruit. The sack of rice cost $35 (about £20) and would last the orphanage just one day- no wonder they struggle to feed the children.

The man that showed us around had worked in the orphanage for 8 years and spent almost every day and night there- without pay. He showed us a few of the buildings where the children sleep. They were quite spacious and looked very colourful. The buildings had been donated one by Norway and one from Australia. 

The children wake up everyday at 6am and go to school for 7am. They attend a public school in the morning and in the afternoon they head back to the orphanage to learn english. After this they can kick the footy around, play with tourists or wind each other up!

We spent some time playing with the children and talking to them. They especially enjoyed taking videos on my camera of themselves, I now have about 6 10 minute videos of them all screaming and posing for camera! Most of the children there seemed happy and at home and all of them spoke very good english. Two of the young boys asked us if we knew Justin Bieber and then gave us a rendition of one of his songs! 

I really enjoyed visiting the orpanage, but just wish they had more money to depend on. Please take a look at their wetbsite and if you can spare some money, please do it! It will go a very long way!!!!


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