“Once in a century” and “on a war footing” is how this global pandemic is now being described, as our medical facilities, often already under strain, face the prospect of having to deal with thousands of infections and choose who best to focus their resources on. This has us scared and inevitably we are all making plans to turn our worlds upside down and to cut ourselves off from direct contact with each other. Schools around the world are closing or are already closed and Cambodia is no different.
From today SeeBeyondBorders is closing all our offices in Cambodia with immediate effect and putting in place plans for our staff to work from home or somewhere they can find electricity. We want to continue to pay as many staff as we can for as long as we can, using this time productively to prepare for when life begins to return to normal and people re-emerge from their houses.
There are many things to consider of course and we aim to communicate frequently and briefly about them with you. We will be writing to our major donors individually to explain what we have already done with the grants they have generously provided and what our plans are in the coming weeks or months. We are assuming schools will remain shut for the rest of this school year and only reopen again in November for a new school year. Hopefully we are being overly conservative, but this aligns with expectations in many developed countries.
Finally, we are only too aware of the devastating consequences on the livelihoods of so many that this battle against the virus is having. We want to focus initially on what we can do about that in a small way in a country that is certainly going to be hit even harder than most.
Our thoughts are with all our supporters as they wrestle with their own challenges at this time. Please stay safe and do not hesitate to contact us even if that is simply to distract yourselves from life indoors. In the meantime our Operations Manager Phath has a short message for you all below.