Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Over the last five years, Friends-International has trained more than 100 Cambodian parents who now get a regular income from producing our funky bags and wallets from recycled newspapers and comics, necklaces and bracelets from recycled cigarette cartons, and many other cool products that are now sold in many countries. Most importantly, they are more than 100 families whose kids now go to school and don’t have to beg on the streets anymore.
Most of the families involved in the project were living in these poor communities affected by the current land crisis in Cambodia. Many of them have been relocated to huge sites further away from the city. To keep supporting them, we had to adapt our work and so we recently started to build our first production center in Andong, one of these sites. While the second floor is still being built, last week was the first week of activity in the center. We were all very excited to see 15 parents gathered in this nice new building, working all day to meet the production deadline for a massive order of paper jewelry from an important European fair-trade company.
Even some kids kindly used their lunch break to help us doing some cleaning, like that one on the picture and his brother who was cleaning our water tank from the inside!
10 additional mothers are now receiving training in this center and will start producing next week. We’re proud to see the number of families supported by the project growing as fast as its commercial results!