People Tell the Story: Cambodia

Posted by on May 29, 2013 in Cambodia, People Tell the Story | 0 comments

Cambodians seem to wear their life stories on their faces. After getting a basic background on the country’s war-filled past, it’s developing present, and it’s promising future, you can almost see these different stages while looking at the people. The elderly seem content, fortunate to have made it through the killing spree of the Khmer Rouge. The middle-aged seem caught in between. Many of them were alive for the horrific events that transpired in the late ’70s, but try to mask that experience with friendliness and positive interactions. And the young are full of smiles and curiosity. Aware of the past, but more importantly, excited for their future. 

Name: Theara
Age: 24
Occupation: Long-term volunteer at NWL
Hometown: Phnom Penh


At 24, Theara is a hybrid between the young and middle-aged. He’s old enough to have a true understanding of the past, but well-educated in the country’s current state of affairs and what the future may entail. His awareness is clear – Cambodia’s youth will be the ones to help the country realize it’s potential. And he is devoted to doing his part. As a long-term volunteer at New Way of Life (NWL), Theara brings his passion for teaching and the future well-being of his country to one of the many orphanages in Phnom Penh. After his time at the NWL (he will probably leave within a year or two), Theara plans to become a teacher. He knows what the priority should be: teaching and preparing Cambodia’s children with a sense of pride and purpose.

Here are a few words from Theara:

What three words best describe your country?
Foreigner (tourism improves the country)
Agriculture (rice fields that so many people work in)

What three words best describe the people of Cambodia?

What is the top priority of the people in Cambodia?
First and foremost is family. After that it’s for our country. We try to do everything for Cambodia. We’re devoted, invested and always looking to help each other. After spending thirty years in war we all just want to make Cambodia stronger and better. We want children to improve and love their country. The older are poor in knowledge and cannot improve the country. 

How do people typically make a living?
Farming and industrial (factory to produce clothes, shoes, etc.).
Selling in the market.

What is your favorite place to visit?
1) Siem Reap – to see the great temples of Angkor Wat.

2) Sihanoukville – beautiful beaches and very relaxing.

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