2018 Cambodia Tour
On 8 December 2018, 16 Year 9 Tara change makers embarked on a ten-day Service Learning Tour to the incredible country Cambodia. The itinerary of our trip was organised by World Vision; we also had two incredible World Vision trip hosts from Australia and a World Vision host who lived in Phnom Phen join us on our trip as well as four of our Tara teachers, Mr Janzen, Mrs Tyler, Mrs Crawford and Dr King. Our excitement could not be contained on our nine-hour flight!
Day 1, we visited the Kings Palace, learning about the King of Cambodia and the religions of the country. The next day we visited the S21 Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields. This day was incredibly emotional, however, learning about the rough history of the country allowed us all to understand the people and the situation of Cambodia. Just before we came home, we visited the incredible Angkor Wat Temples, which are over 1200 years old!
The next few days of our trip consisted of visiting World Visions many Area Programs as well as World Vision Cambodia Headquarters. Along the way, we got to ask lots of questions, got incredible answers and the best of all, were lucky enough to see many little kids.
The most incredible part of our tour was the fact that the language barrier did not disrupt any of the smiles and the joy that both the Cambodian People and us girls felt. All it would take was the kick of a soccer ball or a few shuttlecocks to create sporting games! Or a sudden thunderstorm which forces all of us under shelter, the singing and demonstrating of the hokey pokey and we were all laughing with the most genuine smiles we’ve ever smiled. We spent our time with these families drawing with pencils and books, painting murals on school walls or playing ‘round & round the garden‘ on a 5-year-old kindergarten students hand who is a little bit frightened of such a big girl.
One of the most incredible things about Cambodia is the people. That no matter where you saw them, whether it was the bustling Russian markets, in one of the many slums, in the Frangipani hotels or at a crocodile farm, the people were always smiling at each other and welcoming us, and their joy was contagious. It was incredible seeing these people who live an extremely different life to the one we live appreciate the littlest things like a simple smile. So many of us tried to take this small snippet of Cambodia back home and use it to influence ourselves and the people around us.
We can all say this trip was the more powerful experience in our lives so far. To this day we take notice of the little things around us, think more about Cambodia and their lifestyle, say more to our families to let them know how much we are grateful for everything they do. Most importantly we will continue to take action to all make a change in the world we live in.
Thank you very much,
The Cambodia Girls!