Over the recent term break two of our Year 12 students, Eleanor Borg and Cate Agius took part in the Cagliero Project in Cambodia. We are incredibly proud of them and the work they achieved. Below the girls tell of their experience.
Over the holidays that just passed, Cate and I volunteered in Cambodia to support a Don Bosco school through building facilitates, running youth leadership workshops and teaching English.
This was the most rewarding and incredible experience of my life. It was very hard to live in a different country for two weeks with the language barrier, different foods and being in a third world country but it was worth it when you feel like you’ve made a difference in some of the students lives. I learnt so much but mostly how much I want to be a long-term volunteer now.
The joy I experienced from the students was so infectious that I felt overwhelmed by happiness whenever I was around them. If you ever have the opportunity to volunteer overseas or wherever, please do it. It is amazingly rewarding.
My favourite part was right when we landed, we drove to the school in the tray of one of their school utes, sitting on our suitcases and it was the most amazing way to see their beautiful country and how simple they live. Seeing their country on the way back to the airport felt so much different because I had so much more respect for their country but also Khmer people don’t show emotion in public like we do but as we approached the airport many of the students started to cry and it warmed my heart to feel as though I made a difference.
Eleanore Borg MO4
It was a very busy two weeks in Cambodia. The first couple of days at the school we worked on a drainage project, which consisted of making cement, heavy lifting and spending our break singing "I want it that way" by Backstreet Boys.
We also ran a youth empowerment weekend and facilitated a day of rotations on various activities, such as sport and games. I was lucky enough to run the craft session where I witnessed a lot of pure moments of students making gifts for their friends. During our time we also got to visit numerous markets, beautiful temples, and places like Tuol Sleng and the killing fields, giving us an opportunity to learn about both the beautiful and tragic history of Cambodia.
\We developed close and meaningful relationships with the students, teachers, our homestay families and the other immersion participants, who came from all over Australia. It was incredibly hard saying goodbye to everyone we had met, but knowing that our time there had made an impact on not only the school but also myself gave me reassurance, as I know that it won’t be the last time I’m there.
The Cagliero project is an amazing organisation that genuinely helps communities in need around the world. I recommend those that have an interest in travel, culture and helping people get involved. Feel free to come talk to Eleanor and I about it.
Cate Agius MY5
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