I decided to have a separate little blog for this orphanage in Siem Reap Cambodia.
So let me tell you a little about CDO which stands for Children and Development Organisation. CDO is a family-run orphanage and is basically a shelter for poor, homeless & orphaned children. They give these children a roof over their heads, regular food, basic healthcare and rely on volunteers to teach these children English. This is a non profit organization and they rely on the community and travellers to help with money and anything else the children need.
Most of the children come from one of the poorest villages in Cambodia where there are no health services or education and clean water is scarce.
It is run by a lovely women, known as Mom. I couldn’t believe when i arrived and saw that Mom had just had a baby 10 days ago but yet she is still running around looking after these children.
I had found out about this orphanage from Bob and Claire at the retreat. There are so many scam orphanages where street kids are “hired” and then the money you give is not given to these poor kids. So i contacted Mom at CDO and she replied to me saying the kids were being taken out for lunch by an Australian lady the following day and my help would be much appreciated.
So off i went to the orphanage the following day. The kids were really shy of me at first but eventually warmed to me. With 20 kids in tow we took the kids to a restaurant near Angkor Wat. You could see they were so excited to be getting out of the orphanage for once. Also i don’t think they are used to meat as they were wolfing down their food. It was heart touching.
The next day me and 2 other volunteers decided it would be a good idea to maybe take the kids to a swimming pool. So we went to a swimming pool Mom had suggested but once we arrived there this B!tch (excuse my language) wouldn’t let us in. It was a hotel pool which is open to the public but she said we had too many children and she was not happy with that. I begged and begged and finally she said we could go in for half an hour. As we were walking in she asks me if the kids have swimming costumes……errrrrrrrrr no they are poor and hardly have clothes never mind swimming gear. Its not like they were going to swim naked, they had shorts and t-shirts on that they would swim in but i think she was just looking for any excuse not to let us in. So we were turned away.
I was determined we were going to find a place for these kids to swim. So we found another hotel that had a cover charge of $4 per person. I managed to bring the price down to $2 per person and they did not mind that the kids did not have swimming costumes. There were a few elderly guests swimming at the pool and i was a bit afraid they would get annoyed as the kids were screaming at just touching the water….but thank you for amazing kind people because they ended up joining us in playing with the kids. They can’t swim so they were all hudled on the step of the pool but the elderly guests did not hesitate in picking the kids up and taking them around the pool. It was amazing to see the smiles on their faces and just hearing them squeel with excitement!!!!
I wish i could have stayed longer at the orphanage. There is nothing more precious than seeing the happiness on these kids faces at just the little bit of kindness…all they want is a bit of affection and love and that is FREE TO GIVE…… sooooo if anyone is ever in Siem Reap and you have a couple of hours to give to these kids this is the place to go. Also you can make donations to them which would be much appreciated. Remember the Cambodian Real is worth nothing really so even if you donate something like 20 pounds it goes a long way for them!!!
Here are a few pictures of the lovely kids 😉