FSF Charity – 7 Weeks to D-Day
December is at the door! To many of us it’s a time for a celebration. Depending on origin and religion, the celebrational December days might mean to you Christmas, Hanukkah, Yule, Kwanzaa or something else. In the modern world, these holidays often include also giving something to your close ones (e.g. time or presents). Even though we in Four Sigma Foods live around the globe, most of us have a Finnish background. Looking at this season from an entrepreneurial aspect, it’s often the most important high season to many consumer good industry players. To us in 2012, it’s about enabling better schooling possibilities to the unprivileged children in the rural villages of Cambodia.
From 20th of December to 10th of January 2013 there will be a total of nine of us (FSF employees and our customers) in Cambodia participating in the school enlargement constructions in Thon Mun village school. We just couldn’t be more happier about our upcoming “holiday”! We’ve also enabled a possibility for all of our followers to participate in this process too. So far we’ve collected the funds to cover textbooks for 80 kids for their entire elementary school Thank You! If you haven’t heard yet how you can be part of this too, find out here.
Project Little Dream, a charity organization mostly formed from university students has had a busy and vivid year. John, one of PLD’s founding members sits peacefully in his dorm room in Oxford university while I interview him about the overall progress of this year’s charity case: “I’ve personally been studying here in Oxford for a few years now, and there’s still a few more to come. But since the service trips are usually from December to January, it’s possible for many students like me to participate in the building processes in Cambodia. Throughout the year one of my tasks is to co-operate with different stakeholders involved in the charity. Because of my location, skype and email are pretty vital for me. Even though the working is partly location independent, time is a commodity that we often lack. We don’t have any full-time employees and most of us can only spend a couple of hours in a day to work on PLD. The challenge has always been finishing up the preparation in the summer and managing our time between school and work. Luckily there has been many people wanting to volunteer on our projects. We just made our volunteer selections for this December’s charity and there will be around 40 volunteers working this year. Except for the FSF people, the volunteer group is mostly formed from students in Hong Kong.
For the past few months we have been mostly planning on the programs. Unlike previous years, the programs this year require much more research and we hope to provide the best software solutions for the children in Cambodia that we could use as a template for future school constructions. For the next 1,5 months we all have precise tasks to accomplish before the service trip. Just to name a few we’re analyzing the data collected on the educational level/family background from the past few years to come up with a comprehensive curriculum to meet the needs of the future students. We’re also collecting all the information about the local building material providers and manufacturers to match with our plans for the actual building processes. Every year the process demands literally thousands and thousands of hours, but seeing the genuine happy faces of the children pays of all the hard work we have done!”
If you’re searching for a meaningful present for your loved ones on the forthcoming special events, Project Little Dream has something in the storage for you. So far the most common way to participate has been the Charity bundle. One purchase means that you’ll give five children all their elementary study books for 3-4 years and we’ll throw another set of five on our half.
Wishing you all a merry November,
Here’s Sheena, one of the volunteers who felt the urge to come back in Cambodia for several years in a row:
Hi, I am Sheena! I am in my final year of reading Philosophy, Politics and Economics at the University of Oxford. I joined PLD as a volunteer in the Christmas of 2009 during my final year of high school. I had never been to Cambodia before, and found the prospect of doing charity work in a foreign country extremely exciting. And so it was! By the end of the first week, the construction site was like a second home and it was the most wonderful experience seeing a school grow out of derelict land. Eager to return to Takeo, I went back in 2010 and 2011, to have found hundreds of children taking daily lessons in the very same building, with their standard of English improving year after year. PLD made a difference to the education of many Cambodian children, and I shall be forever grateful that I could have been a part of it!