Although Cambodia’s cities continue to grow, about 82 percent of the Country’s population still lives in rural areas. Village life is harsh, and most families do not have access to basic facilities. A poor family has at least three school-age children that they have to allocate at least $111 US dollars per child per year for having a bicycle, school uniforms, footwear, school bag, study materials and school supplies in addition to $192 US dollars as daily pocket money allocation while they can’t afford to cover all ongoing costs.
Cambodia has achieved a remarkably high net enrollment ratio (NER) for primary school (95%), although the NER falls precipitously for lower secondary (32%). Despite improvements in recent years in the areas of access and quality of education in Cambodia, dropout is still an issue.
Sao Sary Foundation has three types of sponsorship to the children: full, educational and partial. These go to children and youths who have been, or face the highest risk of being, trafficked or abused. Usually, they live in slum areas in the provincial capital or in villages where there are high rates of food insecurity and indebtedness. Village leaders and residents often assist our field staff in identifying those most at risk of trafficking. This process allows SSF to strengthen relations with communities and involves them in the process or reducing the risk of trafficking and exploitation. A risk assessment is made by our Child Protection team prior to selecting children for sponsorship. This involves discussions with family members as well as the child. Sponsored children and their families also sign a contract that clarifies in detail what they will receive and what is expected of them. Regular follow-up visits (sometimes weekly) are scheduled to ensure the family and child has the support they need to reach their goals.
Over the past year we have fine-tuned our sponsorship program to make it more flexible to sponsors as well as individuals and communities. The number children and youths receiving sponsorships increased from 45 in the last reporting period to 138 early this year. Our sponsors include individuals and groups from around the globe, and we encourage contact between them and the children and families they assist. We have three types of sponsorship: full, educational and partial.
Full sponsorships ($100 per month):
Full sponsorships ($100 per month): The number of children and youths receiving full sponsorships has risen to 56. These sponsorships cover all living and educational expenses as well as pocket money for children and youths who live at the Protection Center. Funding also helps support their biological or adoptive families whom we partner with and our Protection and Learning centers. Click on https://ssf.give.asia/campaign/sponsor-a-child to make a health center donation with your name and/or https://ssf.give.asia/fundraise/new to sign up as a fundraiser for.
Partial sponsorships ($35 per month):
SSF introduced partial sponsorships (for children and youths who live with their families) in 2006. These sponsorships allow the children and youths to remain in school, and include financial support for school fees and materials as well as food. Almost all of these, 86, go to girls.
Educational sponsorships ($18 per month):
Educational sponsorships (financial support for school fees and materials, including bicycles) have increased to 8400 this year. These sponsorships are making education possible for 8400 children who face a high risk of any form of child labour, trafficking and abuse. Click on https://ssf.give.asia/campaign/sponsor-a-child to make a health center donation with your name and/or https://ssf.give.asia/fundraise/new to sign up as a fundraiser for.