Cambodian school gets ‘plugged in’

Veritas students learned how their going without electronics for one week helped a school in Cambodia get some much-needed technology.

Veritas students learned how their going without electronics for one week helped a school in Cambodia get some much-needed technology.

In February, the students and their families went “unplugged” for one week to see what life is like without the technology that we use every day and in doing so, raised $2,004 for a school in Cambodia where Veritas teacher Trina Botelho is teaching for a  year.

“I am so touched by the outpouring of your love on these little ones here in Cambodia. The children were completely shocked that other children, from another country, who don’t even know them, would be so willing to help and give,” said Botelho in a letter to the school here.

“Their small faces were so filled with excitement and they could barely contain themselves!”

For the year, Botelho is teaching English, basic business and social skills to women ages 18 to 25 at the Don Bosco school in Phnom Penh, Cambodia where she lives with the students and the Salesian nuns, who also teach there.

She got word back to Veritas that the school was in need of a TV or other such technology to help with the students’ education.

The $2,004 raised bought several items for the school: a large television, which will be used to help teach the children using clips from the internet, to teach them songs/dances and help them with pronunciation of English, etc.; three small speakers with USBs to use in the classrooms when they are practicing English and Khmer, the Cambodian language, dialogues etc.; a microphone and wiring of a sound system so when they have assemblies, the children can hear the teachers clearly; and  a laptop for the school secretary.

“When I went to the school to help present all of the gifts you gave, they couldn’t stop expressing their thankfulness,” said Botelho in her letter. “They continually ran up to me in groups saying, ‘thank you teacher, thank you, thank you, thank you so much!’

“All those thank yous are for you! All the students from Chreh School are very poor and they have nothing to give you in return. However, you can be assured of their prayers for you and their deep gratitude. I am so proud to be a part of such an amazing and generous community. Your kindness and giving hearts will never be forgotten here in Cambodia.”

Botelho said she will keep the school updated about how the technology is being used.

“I am so thankful not only for your large donation but for your efforts in abstaining from using technology for a week,” her letter continued.

“I know how difficult that can be for us who are used to using technology multiple times daily. Thank you for sacrificing and taking the time to experience a piece of what life is like in a third world country.”