A New Normal In Siem Reap

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Back On The Streets

Like many across the world, people in Siem Reap, Cambodia have faced difficult times recently. Months of uncertainty, restrictions, school closures, curfews and severe negative economic impacts. However, things are very slowly returning to a ‘new normal’ for people there. Our Kaliyan Mith program #everydayheroes in Siem Reap are supporting local communities there to get back on their feet.


Their outreach activities include direct survival (Saving Lives) services. They deliver these to children and families on the streets and in vulnerable communities. These include life skills, non-formal education recreational activities, medical services and materials distribution.

Often our teams have to act fast. This week Program Director Maneth was out with his street outreach team (below) when they came across a family with two children. They had just arrived from Banteay Meanchey Province. Their plan was to sleep on the streets while scavenging for things to sell. Our social workers spoke with them about the risks of staying on the street, especially for the children. After that, the family decided it was best to return home for now. They could come again later with a better plan and the resources to see it through. Our team provided them with food and hygiene materials for their trip home.

Looking Ahead

Our team have also been looking forward. They’ve been finding and implementing ways for people to get back on their feet economically, and to help families get their children back to school and keep them there (Building Futures).

Supporting small business startups is just one service offered by our Futures Office. Futures allows people access to income generation and fair and dignified employment opportunities.
In 2021, Kaliyan Mith supported almost 100 Futures beneficiaries with small businesses. Small businesses proved more adaptable and sustainable in the time of COVID-19.


These pictures show us helping to set-up a new moto mechanics business about 40km drive from Siem Reap city. We’ve also followed up with two other small businesses set up in 2021; another moto mechanic and a barber.

Together, (re)building futures in the New Normal

There will be many challenges to come as we continue to live and work under the ‘new normal’. However, the resilience, innovation and determination of our #everydayheroes will ensure we can meet those. We are also sure there will be exciting new opportunities to come as we continue our work with children, families and communities here and across the globe!

(please visit friends-international.org/donate to find out how you can help support our work)

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