Year-end 2008 Newsletter

Welcome To Homestay Volunteer Teachers Organization! Newsletter for March, April and May 2009

Our Volunteer Teacher, Mr. Clint Peters from United States of America, was giving an English Class to our Students in the evening!

Valuable Friends and HVTO Supporter

2008 was a busy, project filled year for HVTO. Officially we are now in our 2nd Year of Operations and we will continue to do all we can to support our children in our communities!

Personally and for the HVTO, this past year has been marked by significant progress with your assistance and contributions. The HVTO has coordinated the delivery of 9 Water Pumps to very needy families and has been providing Free English Classes to over 200 children in Sophy and Sreth villages. I am very happy to see that we have all these children in the communities getting exposed to the English language. I would like to thank our volunteer teachers who have helped this project so much. Besides the informal English education, additionally, I have coordinated to have two children enrolled in the best school in Siem Reap and it has given us an idea to create scholarship programs in HVTO to support many other children who are looking to get sponsored like these two children. Please wait to read the next newsletter which focus on this program!

Looking at 2009, we are going to be even busier than 2008. So please continue to read the newsletter here to see what we have done in the last 3 months and you will see why I say so! I look forward to the year ahead, as you and we (HVTO) identify even greater opportunities to strengthen our bilateral ties, as well as to work together on mutual areas of interest. We value Cambodia’s commitment to further its social, economic and democratic development.

On the occasion of the Khmer New Year, on behalf of the HVTO, I wish you the happiest New Year ever with Peace, Happiness, Luck and Success. May all your dreams and wishes come true. May you succeed in all that you do?

A hearty and big Thank You! To all who volunteered, supported and donated to HVTO during 2008. HVTO looks to get your supports with upcoming project for 2009.

With kind and warm wishes from Cambodia!

Sim Pisith

1. My Personal Issue: 

March 2009 was really the worst time for me in which I lost my lovely mother and (father last year). It was the saddest moment I ever had in my life. It took me a certain time to get over it. Now only the memories that I have with them stay with me and I am going through and dragging my life without parents and I know how hard it is. Well! As the saying, the death meet peace but the living still continues to suffer as life is suffering! We creatures can not get away from the four truths in this world namely birth, aging, sickness and death and our existence is to follow the three natures: Dukkha (suffering, sorrow, misery, pain and illness) Anicca (impermanent, uncertain and transitory) and Anatta (soulless). Becoming the parentless, two sisters and one brother have come under my protection and I am happy to support them as I am the only person in the family

Buddhist Monks were offered with food during the funeral ceremony.

(my family really worked hard for me) who got a better education and I am preparing some ways for them in the future. We decided to marry our oldest sister to a young fellow in the same village and we hope that they will make their way of living like others do. Our youngest sister was sent to stay with my half brother in the city to learn her profession in the sewing school and so far she is doing really well. Since my father passed away, my younger brother who was made Buddhist monk, decided to leave the monastery in order to help work in the family. Few months ago I worked for a lady, the Mexican director of Travel Agency, who want to sponsor my brother to learn his profession as the cook in the Hostelry Professional School

The big procession of moving my mother to the cremation

Personally I am still going on very well with my professional Tour Guide and many friends are coming into my life. Regarding  HVTO work, in the last three months we have been busy with software development for the hvto website and have written terms and condition, reality of volunteering, Child Protection Policies with translation. I would like to thank some friends from Facebook who have helped with part of these documents also.

The representatives of Communities and of MOEYS (Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport) presented THANK LETTER to us (HVTO) for the work we do to help the children and Communities. 

Mr. Clint Peters, our last volunteer teacher from USA and I sit at the table to discuss some work and to share his ideas regarding for the progress for HVTO. 

Normally whenever we do a celebration or religious festivity, Food offering is the big thing to be taken care of and it is a very important part of the fest to reflect your identity.

2. Free English Classes.

Free English Classes are the first work that HVTO concentrates its task on in order to bring high quality English education for our children in the village. We are happy to see that our Introduction letter of importance of the ENGLISH goes to the people in the communities from the lower level to the top, especially those parents who trust and send their children to learn in our classes. Their awareness is our pride. The tradition to require help from their children is still very strong and now is the beginning of the farming season and we know that almost 40% of our students will ask to leave for at least a month from classes to help their parents with work in the rice fields. They asked HVTO to arrange evening classes so that they can join after the day-work but we have our difficulties to open evening classes. First is the security for those children who come from the very far villages as there are some young gangsters waiting to disturb or cause harm to them. (I had one case last month and it gave me a headache to solve this problem). Second we do not have enough light and normally the bulks and wires equipped are stolen and we replace them many times. Our authority asked HVTO to stop the evening classes already. HVTO is committed to have the Child Protection Policy and in this case we should not take risk to do this. To read this, please go to our website

HVTO issued a certificate to our Volunteer Teacher and this picture was taken in evening class.

Our local teacher is giving class in the day time.

This picture was taken by Louis Hui, our volunteer from Hong Kong  last year


Our local teacher and foreign volunteer work together to give the English lesson to the students.

It is one of the HVTO biggest English Classes

When she was giving tuition to the children

3. Words of Mr. Clint Peters, Our volunteer Teacher from USA.

 HVTO would like to thank Mr. Clints Peters from USA who spent 10 days in Sophy to help teach our students. Even though it is a short period but it really helped and HVTO thanks him for his generosity and kindness and for his 200$ donation for the project 2009.  

Listen to his words and ask him questions to share his experience for those who are planning to come and help us here in the village.

(Angkor home stay and volunteer English teaching was a positive experience for me. My chief pleasure was the students’ enthusiasm for learning English. There is only a single light in the classroom, but at night, their energy lit up the room. I brought a Frisbee from home, and it proved endless entertainment during breaks between classes.

I’ll say as warning if you come, and don’t look Khmer, expect to get stared at as if you were an alien by people outside the Meng family. But that’s all part of the adventure. There’s police protection for visitors, but I thought it was unnecessary. I felt very safe and cared for at the Mengs’. It was neat to eat their wonderful food (I actually gained weight) and see how they lived, if for a short time. The family and the students were a joy during my week’s stay. Thanks again!)

Clint Peters:

4. Our upcoming volunteer Teachers  

HVTO has received two Application Forms from our Volunteer Teachers and we are ready to welcome them to our village and our students are already informed that they would have other two foreign teachers to come and teach them to speak English. We are very appreciative to our volunteer for their times and contributions.

Our first volunteer is Mr. Sho Yoshinari from Japan and he is going to stay from 27th May 2009 to 27th June 2009. Our second one is Mr. Michael from England and he is going to stay 8+ weeks from 17th July to the end of September 2009.  

Sho and Michael! Are you ready to get yourselves exposed to our Cambodian Culture?

5. Plan cost for Project 2009 of Free English Classes.  

HVTO is going to terminate project plan 2008 in June and we have held a meeting to set up the Plan Cost for 2009 and we are starting to raise money from now on. We will close our Project 2008 and we hope to have some money left to continue in 2009. So HVTO is appealing for help again from all of you to share a bit so that we can carry on our project in 2009. Please read the Plan Cost description bellow and give us some suggestion if you might have and contact me at

Yearly Payment for HVTO Teachers

Additional Description:  

Each day almost 500 students are attending to HVTO Free English Classes. Each principal gives HVTO one building to operate the programs full day. We are going to provide full-time English Classes in two buildings in two villages, Sreth and Sophy. HVTO has selected four local English Teachers to work in 2009 namely  

1. Mr. Hout Heap
2. Mr. Enn Onn
3. Mr. Keo Kimsang
4. Mr. Koeun Koeuy

Yearly Payment for HVTO Staffs

Additional Description:

Note for NUMBER 6: HVTO needs this person who can work as the local coordinator, tour guide to translate for the volunteers, assistant to the leading people and stands by in the HVTO office in the village on the weekdays and lesson plans for our teachers, controls, writing reports to the presidents and coordinating the communication with departments of local authorities. We must pay him a bit higher.

Note for NUMBER 7:  We are holding our free English programs in public schools and we always have the principals from these schools get involved with our programs to have the strong influence on our students and to give additional work to the principals also. So far we have been getting good cooperation from them 

Note for NUMBER 8: In 2009 HVTO will have many foreign volunteer teachers who will come to stay in the village to help with HVTO projects, so security must be provided for them.

Yearly Payment for some foreseen materials

Yearly Payment for HVTO Administration

Grand Total: 6489.00USD

Required Money: 6239.00USD

Received money: 250.00USD

HVTO is waiting to receive donations to complete this plan cost. We would like to thank our donors for project 2009 namely

1. Mr. Clint Peters (our last volunteer)
2. Clients from Gebeco
3. Mr. Maryan and Ms. Irene from Canada

 HVTO would like to thank Mr. YUN SOWANNA, a freelance professional tour guide who actively helped, He is volunteering to be one of the members for HVTO. 

I would like to recommend you in the future, if you are coming to visit Cambodia and need an informative tour guide, please check him out at    

HVTO is looking for other NGOs, members and partner to broaden our projects in the future.

If you are interested to support us, please let me know at or or phone +8551271002  

6. Water Pumps for the communities.

This Water Pump was donated by Educational Travel Group and Friend s of University of Wisconsin February 2009.

The 10th Water Pump is donated by Dave and Kathy Grinsel from USA in the memory of John W. Antaya.

In this newsletter, HVTO would like to say a special Thank You to Dave Grinsel and Kathy Grinsel who have donated one Water Pump for The big family of the Lerms’ in Sophy Village.

A large majority of people live in the rural areas in Cambodia. The villagers are suffering from bare necessities especially clean drinking water.  

Poor drinking Water and sanitation are the main causes of high rates of infant morality. Having access to clean water and understanding of hygiene is crucial to helping these people to improve living conditions.  

The installation of a Hand Water Pump (It costs $175 for one Water Pump) and providing of Water Filters (available from $3 to 45$) are vital in order to help to reduce diseases and sickness.   

HVTO is appealing to get help from all charitable people who can help to provide a Clean Water Pump and a Water Filter to our needy Cambodian Communities.   

HVTO is a coordinating partner to provide this Water Pump and filter to the real needy families in the rural areas. 

Good News from my friends in Spain

 I got an email from Carlos in Spain to say that his NGO ( ) won the contest of the NGOs to get the money from Students in the school in Spain and he said that he would get around 3000€ and this money will be used to buy the Water Pumps in the villages. We are now studying to see how many water pumps we can do with this money! Probably we can build around 20 pumps. We will keep you up to date in the next email!  

This is to remind that Mr. Carlos and his organization have helped a lot of people in Sophy. Last few years he and his NGO have built a school here and later financed successfully the operation of the boy Little Ang who had heart problem. The people in the whole communities are very grateful to him and his great conscience to support us!  

We are sending you some pictures of the families in Sophy village who deserve these water pumps soon.

At the end I would like to wish you and your families most happiest prosperous new year and enjoy life and love! Regarding to HVTO, if you have any questions and to offer your help please contact me at and I am looking forward to hear from you!  With best and warmest wishes from Siem Reap Angkor Cambodia  

Sim Pisith  

HVTO Director

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