Cambodia had unique lifestyle, amazing culture and unbelievable history (suffered and achievements). I want to share the stories of my country to tourists so they will leave Cambodia with notable stories and remarkable memories. As a change agent, I do not wait for anyone to start, I am the one that starts to initiate the change in this developing country at the age of 15. These are my journeys in 2018: my team created a bike tour experience, conducted drugs prevention workshop, and Frisbee training project.
This is the world of sharing; I contribute my knowledge because I believe in this sagacious quote, “A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle” by Father James Keller.
Cambodian culture had faded, sophisticated people were killed, the capital city was known as the ghost-city; this occurred because Cambodian were under manipulated and indoctrinated by the Khmer Rouge. The consequences made Cambodian economy and society broke down into pieces. Even though Cambodia is rapidly developed, but many flawed is everywhere.
Cambodia’s educated people had diminished day by day during the Khmer Rouge. Education system had been faded, but the Khmer Rouge got destroyed in 1979. Cambodia education system was slowly raised up. As an example, at Liger Leadership Academy are project-based-learning that involve student immersion in real-world experiences outside of the classroom called “Exploration”. Bike tour experience was one of Exploration; we started the bike tour experience called “Journeys of Change.” The idea of Journeys of Change is to learn how to establish a business, support local economies, train students about responsible tourism, provide cross-cultural experiences, and gain funds for the students’ future learning. We’ve been through challenges, but our team overcomes everything that refrains us to make this bike tour successful. We try to make Cambodia become a better place.
As always, Liger students will find the flaws in Cambodia and try to prevent and make Cambodia a better place. We found out that drugs are one of the salient issues in Cambodia. The number of people uses drugs increase rapidly since 2000 based on, National Authority Combating drugs. We had eight people in our team, the age of 15 and 16 years old commit to preventing the use of drugs in Cambodia. We worked with eight high school students from World Renew.
Why did we work with high school students from World Renew?
The government school curriculum is completely different from our school. They mostly listen to the teacher, read the textbook, rewrite everything from the textbook, and undergo the test. The programs repeat like this, again and again, every day. This is boring but they can’t skip school and can’t reform the programs. All of the students had to study for 12 years until the final one-day exam.
It seems like they didn’t have any experience to explore the real world. It seems like they have no experience with technology.
We worked with World Renew students because as always we want to spread our knowledge. Essentially, we made the educated video about drugs, simultaneously we involved everyone from world renew to be in the film. I believe that by including them in the film it introduces the students to incorporate new experience. Moreover, most of them were shy in the camera, so it ushered them to be braver. Additionally, we taught them how to use computer and camera. Most importantly, we planned the workshop about drugs. We designed the workshop with world renew students. Our goal is to let world renew students gain knowledge from us and be able to create their own workshop in the future.
We were conducting the workshop in four provinces: Prey Veng, Svay Rieng, Kampot, and Kampong Speu. In total, there were about 750 people participate in our workshop. About 300 people came to watch our educated video about drugs at night. Everyone loved watching our educated video because they saw their friends. I loved seeing every smile during the workshop. I hope everyone distributes the information to their friends and families!
I spread what I learned because I want people to share what they learned from me as well. Everything I learned is from my experiences and opportunities I get from Liger Leadership Academy. I traveled to Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam for Frisbee competition. The question is: why am I so lucky to receive these opportunities? This is because the influence I got from my ecology facilitator. She introduced me the flat object that flies off her hands. I was so shocked and said, “It’s impossible!” I started throwing for years and I love it. The disc became my closest friend. This year my frisbee skills have been flourishing; I learned a lot from other frisbee players and coaches. I appreciate the sponsorships I got from Liger Leadership Academy and other sponsors. I need to give back my knowledge to other young Cambodian. They knew nothing about frisbee just like me 4 years ago. I want them to experience this modern sport that most Cambodian don’t know about it. My initial move is to introduce the training to the Camkids students in Kampong Speu province. Most importantly, we can offer them the opportunity to come to Phnom Penh (capital city) to train with us. Moreover, most of the kids never came to Phnom Penh before. I never feel that it is a waste of my time because I enjoy seeing their smile and the confidence when they threw the Frisbee.
It is meaningful to allocate our knowledge. As a change agent, it does matter because I believe in one quote from “Chinese proverb”: “You give a poor man a fish and you feed him for a day. You teach him to fish and you give him an occupation that will feed him for a lifetime.” Also by sharing my knowledge and being a change agent, I had grown so much. I had grown to be more mature. I improved my public speaking. I gain more knowledge from everyone because knowledge is everywhere. I learned to confront all of my problems. Most importantly, I improve leadership skills! As a change agent, I will keep illuminating another candle. The knowledge I gain from my facilitators and friends I will try to spread to other as well. I want to make change in this country! I am the future of Cambodia!