Earlier this month, SJI International hosted a Cambodian Cultural Evening to raise money and awareness for their partner UWS Koh Chreum School. The evening was a great success, and included presentations from Ambassador of the Royal Embassy of Cambodia, His Excellency Mr Cheth Narem, as well as UWS founder Chris Howarth. Here’s what Frances Powell, Head of Service Learning at SJI International, had to say about the evening:
At SJI, Service Learning is at the heart of everything we do. We focus on guiding our students to become people for others and people of integrity. This moral and ethical belief is truly the backbone of our Service Learning programme, and watching our students not only shine whilst undertaking service but develop their moral compass is really quite inspirational.
Whilst we offer many service learning programmes at school, it is our relationship with Koh Chreum, through the United World Schools Project, which has really captured the hearts and minds of our community. Our visit to the school has reiterated to our community how important education is to others, and how imperative it is to develop close and meaningful relationships. We have discussed this through awareness days and information sharing with our students, parents and wider school community.
One key event to raise awareness was our Cambodian Cultural Evening which we hosted in school featuring performances from our talented students as well as the Singapore Khmer Community Dance Group. We were honoured and privileged to have His Excellency, Mr Cheth Narem, Ambassador of the Royal Embassy of Cambodia and Mr Chris Howarth, Founder of UWS, who provided thoughtful and insightful presentations focussing on Cambodia and the UWS Foundation. Over 150 parents and teachers attended this event to deepen their understanding of our work, and through this and many other fundraising activities we managed to raise over S$120,000 to support the needs of the community.
We have already begun our next stages which are focused on provision of resources for the community. Our SJII-SchoolBag Project is well under way with Elementary School students ready to pack resource bags for each child in the village to take on our next visit. We are also preparing our next awareness event led by Grade 9 students which will focus on the the food consumed by the Koh Chreum community.
It has been a privilege to watch our students grow and develop a far stronger understanding of global citizenship throughout this project, providing them with an opportunity to make sense of their place in the world.
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