Friday March 15th was a blue-sky day for the latest intake of University Scholarship students at Savong’s School. Under the scholarship scheme these students are supported in four ways:
- Enrolment fees are paid for them for four years – intermediate plus three Bachelors years.
- A living allowance is granted each month to help them cover their living expenses and for books and stationery. It is important that these students not feel like a financial drag on their families.
- Transport into town each day to Angkor University.
- A laptop computer – as required by the University.
To be honest, our fundraising had lagged last year, but this last month a very generous supporter made a donation that enabled us to buy a laptop for each of the students, and to cover their living costs and enrolment fees for another year. The gift gives us time to fundraise while providing continuity for the students.
At the Laptop ceremony the students were invited to bring their parents and this was a considerate move by Savong. Family is, or course, an especially important unit in Khmer society, and this was a chance to celebrate the success of these families: proud parents of the student children.
In the photo below is student Chorm Thea, age 22, and his dad on the left, a farmer who has grown up in extremely tough times. Chorm Thea is one of 6 children, and it is likely that once he gets his degree (these students are hard workers) he will then support his brothers and sisters through University as well.
In this fashion, the gift of a scholarship reaps tremendous returns in Cambodia, assisting not only the bright students who shine in the annual exams, but also their families and their villages.
The giving isn’t all one way either. While doing their studies, these students also do some tuition, mentoring and other duties around the school.