After six months, we returned to Kor Trokeat Primary School to film for our Water and Sanitation program and talk to some of the school children and teachers and see how things have been for them since we held a Hygiene Event in their school. We were greeted by the cheerful children as they busily cleaned their schoolyard and classrooms. It was their cleanup day. Every month, the school children would devote a day for them to gather their energies to help their school in maintaining their facilities. Unlike other private schools children, the students in Kor Trokeat Primary School have to see to it that they keep their learning grounds and facilities clean.
After cleaning up, some of the kids joined the younger ones in the library to read books and look through pictures. Among them was a familiar face – Tao Srey Ly – one of our young student leaders who actively helped us head a village Hygiene campaign in June last year. Srey Ly is now in High School and she has moved to study in Angkor Chum High School, 7km away from Kor Trokeat Primary School. Srey Ly’s teacher told us that she often visited the school and would spend time in the library studying and reading to the other children. She did not notice us, as she was carefully reading about the importance of clean water and proper hygiene to the other children who were also listening intently to her. We were pleasantly surprised to find Srey Ly in Kor Trokeat and we deeply appreciated her show of commitment to continue teaching the children.
It was almost noontime and the children began to leave the school. Srey Ly told us that she has to head home for lunch, change and go to her new school. “I love being in high school. I am learning many new things. Everyday is exciting for me, but I also love visiting my old school and spending time with the children. I am very happy that I still get to teach them and help them in my own little way,” she said.
Srey Ly’s words simply put our mission into perspective. We are grateful to her for allowing us to touch her life as one of our enthusiastic student leaders in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene. She unselfishly shares her time and energy to other children as she pursues her dream of completing her education. It is awe-inspiring to see such unwavering dedication coming from such a young heart.