Unlike in the United States, volunteerism in Cambodia is still in its infancy. Thomas Srun, a Cambodian-American optometrist who has volunteered in the States and abroad since high school, says society-wide volunteering does not have to be exclusive to rich countries.
On International Day of the Girl Child, VOA Khmer reporter Say Mony looks at limited access for Cambodian girls whose families live in poor floating villages on the Tonle Sap Lake to education. Girls of Prek Toal primary school in Battambang province said they don't expect to finish high school because they must help their parents to earn a living.
Over the past decade, foreign scholarships available to Cambodian students have increased. But so has competition for them. Thun Virak, a Cambodian Master Fulbright student in political science at Northern Illinois University, says this makes good strategy and preparation all the more important. On a recent trip to Washington, he spoke to VOA Khmer’s Soeung Sophat about knowing where to find scholarships and how to best prepare for them.
Youth representatives from six political parties running in upcoming parliamentary election joined an International Republican Institute-organized debate over the weekend to show their respective parties' policies. However, some audiences say the Cambodian People's Party had arranged their dominant supporters to cheer when its candidate had to speak, disrupting the debate. (Say Mony, Phnom Penh)
Two US ensembles last week performed benefit concerts in Phnom Penh just ahead of the Fourth of July holiday. Band members and organizers say they hoped the music would bring the US and Cambodia culturally closer. American children from the Boston Children's Chorus sang "Phnom Penh," a song composed by the late king Sihanouk in the Cambodian capital. (Say Mony, Phnom Penh)
Eight Cambodian students were awarded a prestigious Fulbright scholarship this year to pursue higher education in leading US universities. In interviews with VOA Khmer, the students said they hoped to help develop their country more on their return. VOA Khmer's Say Mony reports from Phnom Penh.