Margo Kopec is a teacher at the Institut auf dem Rosenberg school in St. Gallen, Switzerland. She contacted Wat Opot as she was doing a lesson on HIV/AIDS and wanted to see if it was possible to have her 10th grade students Skype with our kids. She wanted to have her students put a face to the lesson and explore a world beyond their own. She had an idea to also have a fund raiser with the money going towards the playground equipment which was on our WISH LIST.
A Skype call was arranged and the children were able to be connected. We had not connected our kids with foreign students this way before and of course we wanted the WOCC kids to be on their best behavior, so when Wayne saw Srey Nuet making faces into the camera he motioned for her to stop and then upon looking into the computer he saw one of Margo’s students doing the same thing! Kids are kids regardless of where in the world they are. The call went well and structured questions were asked and answered as well as teen banter such as iPhones popped up and inquiring about happiness in life.
Margo and fellow teacher Belinda Mellor and their students more than doubled their $1,000 goal and here is how happy some of their funds made us when our playground equipment arrived!
With minor obstacles conquered, the most used piece of equipment (by the kids, volunteers and staff) was driven to its resting place. A large swing with bench seats and a large table in the middle.
The funds were used to purchase new thatch for our old equipment (much smaller swing bench), which Phearon is demonstrating how versatile the seating areas can be.
The kids putting up the thatch roof on a seating area outside the girls dorm.
Two single swings were purchased as well.
And then the colorful swing-set for the smaller kids (although the big kids had to try it out first).
The two teeter totters were promptly cemented in.
And a day later were put to the test by kids of all ages. (Socheat out weighing our handyman assistant, Mr. Eck).
Again, weight over age matters, as 5 yr. old Phearon keeps 7 yr. old TaiWong suspended.
Nap time for Chay on an overcast day with staff utilizing the new swing on their lunch break.
SokRith practicing how to be a motodop driver in Phnom Penh.
How happy are we? You can’t fake these smiles.
With such a large donation, we were able to purchase some good football equipment including some new goal nets.
THANK YOU Margo, Belinda, and the Students from Institut auf dem Rosenberg!