While I was in Cambodia, I met two new friends who were affected by Cambodia’s history just as much as I was. Deo is from Holland and Natasha is from New Zealand. After we parted ways we have stayed been in touch regularly and have started to brainstorm on ways that we could give back; especially to the tuk-tuk drivers that we had met during our time there.
In the meantime, I’ve had some people reach out to me after reading my posts about Cambodia saying that they too, would like to help out in some way. Was there a way that we could some how buy a tuk-tuk for a driver? It may seem far fetched and small but just helping one person is a start. At the moment, there are numerous charities in Cambodia set up to help children in orphanages; some of the kids that live there aren’t real orphans but their families are not able to provide for them so they send them there. However, there isn’t much out there to help the middle-aged citizens. And unfortunately, since everyone with any sort of education was killed during the Pol-Pot years this country is literally starting from scratch. If we could help the people around 30-40 years old, to have sustainable jobs, they in return, would be able to provide for their children and hopefully give them an opportunity to succeed in life.
What we learned during our trip, and what I mentioned in a previous post, is that most tuk-tuk drivers rent their tuk-tuks. After paying for the rental and gas, they only make a few dollars each day. A tuk-tuk in Cambodia costs around $1,800 dollars which is absolutely nothing to us in the western world, heck I spend almost that much on a whim when I want to buy a plane ticket to an exotic country. What if there was a way that we could somehow create a charity to provide tuk-tuks to drivers so that they could make a good living for their families?
It just so happens that Deo is a web designer and is doing an internship in Bangkok. So when I was there, we decided to meet up and brainstorm some more ideas. While we are hesitant on how this could all work out, we are optimistic that we can find some way to help and give back to the beautiful people of Cambodia.
At the moment, I have no idea how many people read this blog. I can only see how many people “follow” it if they have signed up. But I know that there are definitely more than the 77 people reading this (which is what it shows on my blog site). If there is anyone that is reading this that has any ideas we are open to suggestions. Hoping to turn this dream into a reality. Stay tuned……..
Brainstorming on the rooftop of the Sofitel Bangkok