Snay L’a Community School, Cambodia

Snay L'a Community School

Snay L’a Community School – First of many!

We support ‘Stella in Cambodia’ who have built a school in Snay L’a, Cambodia. Along with ten other Trutex retailers and Trutex themselves we have paid for the building of a sewing workshop which has cost little over £5,000. This will benefit not just the children and the school but all of the villagers to make them self-sustaining.

The building of the sewing workshop has been a difficult process. Things which seem so easy and straight-forward in the western world are 10x more difficult to source and build in countries like Cambodia. Everything has to be done by hand whereas here we have the luxury of machinery. The Cambodian school children have been helping the process by building bottle bricks using recycled materials such as plastic and carrier bags which will go towards a new toilet block and washroom.

Businesses we work with:

  • Jackie Lewis – Trutex Newbury
  • Matthew Easter – Trutex
  • Terry & Trudy Ferbrache – Trutex Guernsey
  • Ian & Lynne Spalding – Trutex Maccelsfield
  • Marie – Boydells
  • Dave Moulton – Sportsland
  • Terry Frizelle – Trutex Agent
  • Ron Riley – Trutex Agent
  • Freddy – Trutex Hackney
  • Ros Keward – Just Schoolwear

Stella wants to use this school as model for other rural areas where there is no education available and a very real chance of children and young adults having to leave their homes to help support the rest of the family.

The idea is to reduce the number of Street Children and those being sent to unknown destinations supposedly to work in factories or sweatshops. Sometimes they’re able to support their family in this way but other times they don’t actually arrive at their destination and never return home. Trafficking, slavery and the sex trade are all very real threats to people who are vulnerable in poverty.

Community_school Community_school

The school eventually needs to be self-funded. Sustainability program to be phased in over time.

Sewing workshop

  • Clothes for local and tourist market
  • Jewellery from recycled materials
  • Soft toys and puppets for tourist market

Small farm

  • Breeding pigs for sale
  • Chickens for eggs, breeding and sale
  • Vegetables for local market

Mechanical workshop

  • Metalwork repairs
  • Bicycle repairs

Stella’s Blog

Stella’s Blog – 3rd April 2016 A BIG day today! Finally our building is complete and we had the blessing ceremony. We invited 5 monks, 20 important adults, 5 young adults from Anjali House (half way house for former Street Children where I started when I first came here) and all of our 160 students. The ceremony was held outside for the first part and then inside the sewing workshop for the second part. While the…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 16th March 2016 A bit more progress at Snay L'a Community School - the floors are all complete, doors and windows all painted a handsome shade of blue and each has been fitted with handles and a large padlock. The children have been playing in the empty building but now we are near completion we need to start installing a respect for property and more importantly not allow all the children to walk…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 24th February 2016 Finally the floor is underway! I was surprised how thick the cement was underneath but apparently thats how they do it here. The lady and man in the picture spend a lot of time on construction sites in Thailand putting marble floors into hotels, seeing them working like this in their own village made me happy because this is just what our community school is all about - creating opportunities…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 18th February 2016 The school has been open for just over a year - what started as an idea to help 20 of the most needy children in the village very rapidly became 80 and now we have 160! Yes, we have just taken another 80 students which still is not all the village children but it's the vast majority of 8 - 15 year olds who are not employed in full time…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 12th February 2016 Our sewing workshop has a beautiful roof and a sun canopy over the front of the building - this serves several purposes, it keeps the sun off and it also means it keeps the rain off during the wet season. Its customary in Cambodia to take your shoes off before entering a house or building (unless its a shop on the side of the road) which means there will always…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 27th January 2016 There is a lot of activity at the school at the moment and I have to add a LOT of excitement - so many great things are about to happen for our 80 students who a year ago didn't even have the school! The building work is coming on nicely now that the rice season is almost over. The struts for the roof are going on, the floor has been…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 15th January 2016 Here are some pics of one of the villages we've been looking at... It is top of the list at the mo but as I said before it will take time to find the perfect place because we will have to buy the land and negotiating the price, gain permission from the village chief and district chief. If we don't buy the land there's a high chance of the landlord…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 12th January 2016 I was at the school today (making bottle bricks with the kids - we'll use them to build the toilet and washroom, more about that later!) I thought you'd like to see the progress - we're back on track with 8 builders working on site.  Read More
Stella’s Blog – 11th January 2016 We arrived at Snay L'a and the Pagoda to great excitement, three small children, all on push bike arrived just as we pulled up and the smallest one expertly jumped off before they stopped and laughing, ran to his friends, the chatter from the kids was similar to a flock of starlings and the reason for such excitement is its movie night! Despite the fact they were only going to…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 26th December 2015 As mentioned previously, the rice harvest is in full swing so the builders are busy in the fields for at least another week. However there is some progress as you can see, the walls are going up slowly and once the harvest is over I expect to see a flurry of activity and the completion in January or early February. So while construction is under way, we're busy trying to…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 25th December 2015 I had a lovely Christmas Day at our school. When I arrived I was surprised to see about 50 children instead of the usual class of 18 - 20 but I soon found out why they were there... They gathered around me in a huge circle and sang three rounds of Happy Birthday! - (my birthday was on 23rd) They had made cards and a lot of little presents in…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 20th December 2015 The building is progressing slowly for the time being as it is harvest season. The rice harvest is the most important thing in these rural areas as its the income for the entire year. This year the yield has been poor due to late rain and less volume than usual so unfortunately this means farmers will have to borrow money against next years harvest. I don't have to tell you…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 1st December 2015 Great news! All permissions have been granted by the village Chief and other powers that be and building work is underway. First of all we had to widen the road leading to the school as it was only suitable for an ox cart at best and more usually bicycles. In fact last time I was there, due to it being rainy season, I had to roll my trousers up and…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 23rd November 2015 Progress... October and November 2015 (December - April still to come!) There was great excitement this week when an ox cart arrived in the village... finally, the new desks have arrived - they fit perfectly between the pillars of the house above. I took two classes and wanted to give the kids as much chance to speak and hear english as they don't usually have contact with a native speaker,…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 23rd October 2015 I have met with the builder again and we're nearly there with the final costings - a few things we have had to consider... mainly access to the village - the mud road is so narrow and rutted its impossible to get there by car and in places its too narrow for a truck. (the desks are being delivered by Ox cart!) but for the heavy trucks to bring in…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 18th October 2015 Hi all I hope all goes well with you? A lot of progress this week as our school is starting to take shape... but before I tell you about that I want to tell you about the main P'chum Ben festival day. Teacher Bora from our school invited me to the festivities at Snay L'a and of course I was delighted to go. So on Monday I was up nice…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 14th October 2015 Well I survived two hours in the monsoon on a motorbike - rocking a great look in my 'convenience raincoat'!(everyone wears those pastel plastic raincoats with hood! There was an amazing big red sky on the way home so I had the two extremes of motorbiking : ) You may have seen my FB (link to facebook profile) posts but in case not let me fill you in on progress…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 13th October 2015 I have been in Cambodia for just over two weeks and have been fully immersed! I went to the first of three P’chum Ben festivals the first day I arrived - (it goes on for a fortnight) and I have been whizzing around ever since. The festival is fascinating - all about feeding ancestors and atoning sins in both their past life and of course in our own present one…Read More
Stella’s Blog – 9th October 2015 Just a quick note to say I'm going to the school tomorrow - I have had to delay going due to the monsoon and various other transport problems (but thats all part of the challenge!) I am going tomorrow on the back of a motorbike so wish me luck - 2 hours each way : ) ... they tell me the road has been repaired since the last time I…Read More