On Friday the 11th of September the Australian Ambassador to Cambodia visited our programs in Battambang. Ambassador Pablo Kang spent the morning in a school in the Ek Phnom District and followed this with a meeting with SeeBeyondBorders’ staff in central Battambang.
This is the first time representatives from the Australian Government have visited our work in Cambodia. Accompanying Ambassador Kang on this visit were First Secretary and Consul Ryan Tierney and Program Manager Sokunthea Nguon. The delegation observed two lessons for children in early grades and saw firsthand the impact of Australian Aid funding.
Schools in Cambodia have only just reopened and restrictions meant that the numbers of children in each class were restricted to half their usual number. The delegation observed a grade 2 literacy lesson and a grade 1 maths lesson. Both teachers they observed were energetic, skilled and above all competent. Education Technical Manager Phan Sophen accompanied the delegation during the lessons and provided feedback on how he believed the teachers had improved as a result of being part of our programs.
Following the morning in the school, Ambassador Kang listened to a presentation on Australian Aid and the work of SeeBeyondBorders. This presentation was given by Country Manager Pheung Pov and Project Manager Boumy Thang. It focused not only on our Quality Teaching Program but also on Community Engagement and the importance of working with the Cambodian Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, MoEYS. The Ambassador was presented with a special information booklet which was designed for his visit and a framed photo of our ANCP funded programs. Furthermore he also viewed some video messages from our Australian staff who could not be in Cambodia on the day.
Before returning to Phnom Penh Ambassador Kang took some time to reflect on his visit to SeeBeyondBorders. You can watch his reflections in the exclusive video below.
SeeBeyondBorders has been accredited by the Australian Government through its Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP) since 2017. Commenting on the importance of this funding, SeeBeyondBorders Co-Founder and CEO Ed Shuttleworth said,
“The funding we receive through ANCP, with whom we have base accreditation, has provided a cornerstone to what we can spend in Cambodia underpinning our work in education.”
SeeBeyondBorders wishes to thank Ambassador Kang and colleagues in the Australian Embassy for taking the time to engage with our work and see firsthand how children in our programs are learning in school. The support of the Australian Government makes a difference for Cambodian children.
*We have not published the name of the school for safeguarding reasons.