Steve has volunteered, helping the children and families of Otres, for 4 consecutive years.
When the land repossession occurred in April, he rallied his family and friends and, along with other supporters of Shine, managed to secure enough funding to ensure that the families in desperate need, have somewhere to live for the next 3 years. This gives the families a chance to stay as part of their community and for Shine to work alongside them, to create a non co-dependent situation for the future.
Steve’s thank you.
“I’m now back in England and thought I would update all those who generously donated towards the rehousing project.
We rented land and moved the nine most vulnerable families with children who literally only had a few clothes and pots and pans to their name. We paid for the materials needed to rebuild their homes and community. This land gives them much needed security and shelter.
Some displaced families retreated to other family dwellings and are trying to fight for small compensation claim from of the government. If they succeed, they intend to rebuild on the land you provided. If they move first, with our assistance, there is no way that they will receive government compensation.
I can’t express in words what you have done for these people, they have never had this security before and although built rather cheaply, it’s a place to call their own. I’m back in England now and time to crack on with the other half of my life but there will be posts put up by Shine as things progress, not just with the housing but with other projects too.
I have become very close with the families of Otres: the bonding through many dinners cooked for me, the countless cans of beer and rice wine and time spent has made leaving this year heart breaking.
I love their strength of character and the way they handled the whole situation, in fact any situation.
We talk of how the third world should learn, but living in it,I know personally that we can all learn so much from there. In Cambodia, I am surrounded by smiling, happy faces and characters forever laughing and joking; the community spirit, the fact they have so little but have so much more than money can buy.
It gives me the opportunity to live within a community full of love and happiness half the year…see you soon Otres.”
Steve’s word epitomize the people, situation and that we don’t need to teach Cambodia. We just need to support and help with the resources needed to allow a community full of: talent, skills, ambition, love and compassion; thrive again to create its own future free of the poverty cycle.