CHANNY

CHANNY’S STORY

I gew up with the common perception that if you don’t come from a « smart » family, meaning no one in your family works for exemple as a lawyer, doctor,or teacher, you’re not intelligent and will probably not get a « good » job.

My family wanted me to work for the government in an office, as a teacher, or in a bank, so that  you get a better income and have people respect you more. So naturally when I was younger, I wished I would become a teacher or work in a bank.

I’m 28 years old, single and don’t have any children yet.

After highschool I needed to save money to go to University and decided to work as a sales in Phnom Penh. My parents wanted me to become a teacher and stay in our village, But I left anyway and stayed with my aunt for 1 year.

Then my mother wanted me to come back and was willing to pay for University in Kampot if I also learned to sew. So I did as she wished. However I didn’t like sewing, and since I was too busy studying and sewing, I didn’t have time to work and earn some money. My mother therefore had to provide for me, and in the end she didn’t want to pay for University anymore. She wanted me to focus on the sewing classes. Things were becoming more and more difficult, so I decided to leave my parents house again and go live in Kampot, which is 45 minutes away from my village. I was 22 years old at the time, I didn’t have a job, but luckily for me I could stay at a friend’s place.

Eventually I found a position at the reception of a private school and worked there for almost a year. I wanted to become fluent in English, so I managed to get another position at a restaurant and guesthouse where I could practice and improve it. I was working there for a year and half, when a friend introduced me to Freya who convinced me to join Banteay Srey Project.

CHANNY

I started with cleaning and cooking, and worked my way up to become Banteay Srey Project Manager. I’m now in charge of the recruitment, overlook the trainees, prepare their schedule and salary, but I also act as a big sister when they’re going through some hard times.

I also welcome the volunteers, organise their schedules and help them settle in. I am their contact person if they need anything. Basically I make sure everything runs smoothly at the spa for the trainees, the volunteers and the guests.

I’ve been working here for 5 years. I particularly enjoy working with Freya and all the volunteers. I’ve been learning a lot from them.

I’m grateful for all the opportunities that have been given to me to grow. Banteay Srey Project does indeed empower women. I’m not the same woman I was when I joined the project, I’m proud of how far I’ve come and I’m glad to contribute to empower other Khmer women.

I started with cleaning and cooking, and worked my way up to become Banteay Srey Project Manager. I’m now in charge of the recruitment, overlook the trainees, prepare their schedule and salary, but I also act as a big sister when they’re going through some hard times.

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