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Entries about siem reap

Cambodia: Volunteering PACDOC Orphanage

Teaching English at a Non Government Organisation for disadvantaged children. PACDCO is a truly inspirational and wonderful place

semi-overcast 34 °C
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PACDOC orphanage is located roughly 10kms outside of Siem Reap.
It is primarily run by a Mr Boran and his wife.
They provide shelter, food, education / skill learning, clothing (including uniforms for government school) and importantly love, attention and direction to roughly 44 children who's parents have either passed or simply cannot afford to look after them.
Though PACDOC does not receive funding, there are some philanthropic organisations such as ELIV from Taiwan who assist by building infrastructure and teaching, for them.
I initially found PACDOC through a (will reman nameless) volunteer placement organisation who wanted some serious $$$ to place me there.
After finding the orphanage Facebook page, I found that going through an Agency wasn't necessary and they were happy to accept teachers directly.
Without knowing too much about the volunteering industry it seems there are placement organisations out there making a big healthy profit from the goodwill of others hmmm....

Teaching and Classes

When I arrived, there wasn't much in terms of tools, books or teaching aids.
On my first day i brought a soccer ball with me, and taught the kids the basic words and phrases used in a soccer game - in English.
Of course they already followed premier league and loved both Arsenal and Manchester with equal passion.
It was a great afternoon, and good way to break the ice with the class.
The next day we got into lessons. I didn't plan too much ahead, but rather have different activities in my - arsenal.
All the children I taught had a very high aptitude, and strong willingness to learn.
English is a high priority for the orphanage agenda. They want to enable these children to eventually work in industry or the growing tourism market where there will be plenty of opportunities for them.
One of the great things about PACDOC is that their children get the standard government education as all Cambodia children do, plus the extra English lessons from volunteers - these kids have a great advantage in the regard, despite their disposition.
It took a few days, but we gained a lot of momentum with new phrases and sentence structure.
I would recommend for anyone interested in volunteering in Siem Reap to go here! Contact me directly if you want to know more.

New Friends and Culture Learning

There is a very broad range of ages at PACDOC - from toddlers to early 20's. The older ones drive the school age children to government school, assist with volunteers (and teach when volunteers are not there).
The older guys taught me a lot about Cambodia's wonderful culture and took me for a big night out on the town!
Teaching at PACDOC and bonding with the people there was a truly remarkable, humbling and inspiring experience that i will never forget.

PACDOC photo album

Posted by SkinnyFists 23:17 Archived in Cambodia Tagged siem_reap cambodia_volunteering pacdoc teaching_english Comments (0)

Cambodia: Siem Reap and Ankor Temples

Beautiful cosmopolitan city, and fascinating temples that rival Egypt

sunny 35 °C
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Bus to Siem Reap, and playing choons

The bus from Battambang to Siem Reap was a joy compared to the last trip. Almost seamless!
At the rest stop I enjoyed the best banana/sticky rice ever!
Anything wrapped in vine leaves in Cambodia seems to be delicious!
The young chap sitting next to me seemed fascinated by my iPod!
I offered to play him some tunes which seemed to make his day!
I started mellow with some indie, but he seemed underwhelmed.
Then I amped it up with some drum and bass which got him screaming and air drumming.
He loved the drums - so I stayed with DnB, Jungle and a bit of Hip-Hop.
Whenever the tunes got too mellow (Erik B and Rakim was too mellow!) he said "no, more dum-dum-duhdum" - flailing his hands in the air.

Finally we arrived in Siem Reap, and I was greeted by Mr Phally, the tuk-tuk driver for me hotel.

Siem Reap City

Siem Reap has a really nice vibe. The old market area is the nicest(see: touristy) part, located on the river, with an awesome night market and heaps of great restaurants and bars.

I'll also say it is the most friendly place I have visited in all of my travels thus far.
I stayed at Neth Socheata hotel, which is outstanding in terms of location, service and facilities!



Temples of Ankor

Mr Phally took me on a 2 day tour of the Ankor Temples. Ankor Wat is everything you've heard and then some.
There are so many temples in this area that you could spend a week here. The architecture and designs are incredible.
For me this was en-par with the sites of Egypt. Just amazing!
I recommend buying a guide book for the temples. They are money well spent as are the guided tours of Ankor Wat.

My photos of the Ankor temples are here:
Ankor Temples Photo Album - Facebook public link

Posted by SkinnyFists 23:07 Archived in Cambodia Tagged temples siem_reap ankor_wat ankor_temples Comments (0)

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