On International Families Day, one Cambodian mother recalls how the Mith Samlanh program supported her to keep her family together…
‘My husband died leaving me with six children, so I moved to Phnom Penh in search of work. It was very difficult and I didn’t have enough money to send my kids to school here in the city. I remarried, but my eldest son would often fight with his stepfather, so he ran away. I was very worried when he was living on the streets and using drugs, so I was happy when Mith Samlanh staff helped him with his addiction and offered him a place on their training program.
Outreach workers from the center came to visit me to talk about why my children were not in school. When I explained that we were poor and they saw our tiny house, they asked if I would like to be part of the Home Based Production program. They taught me sewing skills and trained me to make bags; now I have a regular income each week.
My younger children went to the Education Center at Mith Samlanh to catch up on the lessons that they had missed. Two of them are now back in regular school and the youngest are still studying at Mith Samlanh. My daughter is always telling me about what she does in the art class at Club Friends and says that she wants to be an artist when she grows up. It is good to see my children are happy and that they are learning things so that they can have a better future. I am very grateful that I do not have to worry about money so much any more.’