Friday, 26 October 2007
Tuesday, 23 October 2007
It has been a great class - good natured and hungry (in every way!) young people who have been lots of fun to get to know.
Monday, 22 October 2007
Sorry - pretty awful pic and New Life Fellowship is not nearly as 'white' as this - this was taken at a 10.30am service; the 7am service is almost wholly Khmer (now, why would that be?)
Thursday, 18 October 2007
Yuth and his mum (foreground); Srey Lak and her parents, with Kara
World Vision do an outstanding job in organising sponsor's visits. There is some NZ based homework first - allow three months as you need a police check and WVNZ communicate with the local national office. There is also a small cost ($50 in Kara's case) for transportation (ours and the sponsor families) and lunch for everyone.
We were taken by World Vision staff from Phnom Penh out to Samrong Tong, around a one hour drive west. At the WV centre there, we were given an introduction to the NZ-sponsored projects they are involved in, working with the poorest people in income generation, sanitation, nutrition, water storage and education. Then it was off to visit a local school; 6 classrooms built with WV funding.
Following the delightful school visit, it was back to the WV local centre where we gained our first glimpse of little Yuth, near exploding with excitement, and shy young Srey Lak clinging to her mum and dad. It really is a moving experience, when two worlds meet because there are people who care about people.
For the children's parents, there is obviously such gratitude. Yuth is an only child. Srey Lak has three brothers - one of whom died of meningitis just two months ago. Mum was still hurting greatly, and she cried when Kara expressed her condolences.
Srey Lak gets busy - Cambodian art for Kara!
After a good connecting time, WV staff took us all to Kompong Speu town for lunch. There were 13 of us around the table - an incredibly exciting event for the little ones!
Lunch time - Sil (World Vision staff member in Samrong Tong - foreground)
After lunch, it was 'goodbye' to Yuth, Srey Lak and their families - and further visits to WV projects. We met a family WV are working with in income generation - 700 catfish being raised in a pond one metre deep; maybe 2x7 metres dimensions. Another family we met now have a 4000 litre concrete tank for water supply and were given their seed for the first crop water grass. We also saw a well installed by WV. Their work is very focussed and strategic, and we were impressed with the calibre of their staff and the work that they are doing in these poor village areas.
Kara in Kep - she promises to return
We had already learned that our 5 booked rooms had become 4. More surprises in store however - only two nights had been booked in which meant that there was no room at the inn on day 1. Atay panyaha (no worries) - seven of us took a boat out to Rabbit Island while Graham and Sue Taylor (of moto robbery fame), Sue Hanna and Frank (who I still need to introduce) slummed it at the Kep Beach House - aircon, swimming pool .... you get the picture.
It was a wonderful way of spending thirty hours or so. Two of those hours that entertained us the most was the wait for dinner - cooked over an open flame. One hour into the wait, and the cook is running after a chook, knife in hand (also true!).
Kara, and our chariot to Rabbit Island in the background. The island lies very close to the border with Vietnam. It is perhaps 2km x 1km; with houses dotted along the coastel strip and impenetrable, hilly jungle in the interior.
Good night, Vietnam
Vanna - home of the famous $1 pancake breakfast
Thursday, 4 October 2007
He was here for a couple of days to connect with one of Cambodia's excellent pastors, after ministry in Taiwan and Borneo. As ever, Mike carries such enthusiasm for the work of God and such a fulness of the Holy Spirit. We greatly enjoyed an hour or so re-connecting time.
Great to see you and be with you, Mike!
Only four more sleeps until daughter Kara arrives for her 12 days with us! After that it could get quieter with Sue heading back to NZ to have her hand checked out and our great young Dutch couple returning to Holland. However, we are expecting further guests of the beaten-by-the-All Blacks-in-the-semifinals nationality - for maybe four months. Watch this space ...