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Building Hope for a Brighter Future

Prasat Rang Village, Cambodia

The small family of believers in the Prasat Rang Village are one of the most ignored groups in the community. The village is predominately Buddhist. Prior to the School for Kids (SFK) project intervention in Prasat Rang, no member of the church was ever considered for village leadership.

However, when Samaritan’s Purse introduced the possibility of constructing a new school building, the villagers started allowing some members of the church to become community leaders. The participation of church members in a program of Samaritan’s Purse, School Support Committee (SSC), has given local believers the chance to be recognised as leaders in Prasat Rang. Through SSC participation, Christians in this village have proven to be good partners in community service and development.  

Mr. Soun Hol is a 27-year-old man who lives in Prasat Rang with his wife and two children. In addition to being a good father and husband, Mr. Hol is an elder at his church and an active SSC member.

Ouch Pan (left) and Soun Hol (right)

In an interview with Mr. Hol, he described his previous experience working with children before he became an SSC member: “I never worked with the teachers and the community. I only worked with the children, helping some of them to own a bicycle. I thought that bikes are very important to students, especially those who are living far from the school. I felt that [adults were] not interested in listening to me so I worked only with the students.”

When Samaritan’s Purse implemented the School For Kids school building project in early 2016, the village chief, principal, teachers, and other SSC members requested that Mr. Hol take charge of the SSC’s Finance Committee. As the new school was being built, the SSC supported Samaritan’s Purse in day to day construction, monitoring, and coordination to ensure sound construction implementation by the constructors. Mr. Hol and other SSC members were trained by Samaritan’s Purse on how to monitor and check the quality of the construction routines. Mr. Hol grew to love his role as an SSC member so much that he starting doing more work than he was asked.

In an interview, Mr. Hol expressed his deep appreciation for Samaritan’s Purse. “I thank the Lord for choosing me to be a member of the SSC,” he said. “This is my first time that I worked with the school principal and the teachers… I will try my best to work with them harmoniously so that I [can] share God’s love to them. The students in the school are more open and willing to listen to the gospel now [that] a Christian organisation [has given] them a new school building that they never thought would be given to them.”

According to Mr. Hol, village leaders and the community as a whole are grateful for Samaritan’s Purse as well. “The elders of the village are also thankful to Samaritan’s Purse for the new school,” Mr. Hol remarked. “Most of the parents have high hopes now for their children, especially because they learned that the schools in the other villages where Samaritan’s Purse [has] helped also received assistance for the improvement of educational quality…”

Mr. Hol and his church’s pastor, Ouch Pan, are now more committed to serving God’s mission in their community. They hope that more people will see the glory of God through their work. They are very thankful to Samaritan’s Purse for providing a way to establish a good relationship with the rest of the villagers who are now open to hearing their testimonies and declarations of faith.

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