Warm Smiles and Twinkles in Their Eyes
Signing up for an organization that is based around teaching children in a different country can only result in positive outcomes. This Cambodian trip has clearly done that for me. There is nowhere else I would have rather been the past few weeks than here. Not only have I created strong relationships with the students and staff at the schools we taught at, but also with my fellow volunteers and local Cambodians. I came from Colorado with only one family and I will leave Cambodia with many families, what more could I ask for.
The value of education was put into perspective for me while I was on this trip. We ventured through the city and neighboring cities and experienced the living conditions of these children, yet they showed up everyday wanting to learn more. As I stood in front of the classroom everyday, I could not help but to embrace the warm smiles and twinkle in their eyes. After a long hard day at school, most of them wandered the streets of Siem Reap desperate for tourists to buy their products in hope that the money they earned would be enough to take home to their families. Without an education, selling products on the street is the common job these kids would have to take in the future, even though the amount of potential for these children is unreal.
Learning about all of the history and tragic events that took place in Cambodia allowed me to better understand the background of these people. Seeing how happy these people are after going through such horrific events and doing everything possible to overcome the past gave the word strength a whole new meaning for me. Cambodia will always have a special place in my heart.