ABCs and Rice

Empowering the poor, through education and community support,
to break the cycle of poverty.


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Team Spirit, Smiles,and Sportsmanship! Thank you GLOBALTEER

Posted by Tammy D on October 30, 2012 at 5:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Globalteer kicked off their football season on Sunday 23rd September with some awesome displays of footballing skills, teamwork and great sportsmanship in the first friendly competition of the season with the 11-14 boys. ABCs and Rice were well represented as usual, and threw themselves into the fray, cheered on by volunteers and staff, as well as the girls who are eagerly waiting on their turn in a few weeks’ time. One of the boy’s teams made it through to the semi-finals of the competition, so congratulations all round! Read Globalteer’s full report HERE

With a new co-ordinator, Charlie Pomroy assisting all of the participating organizations this year's league is off to a brilliant start. The bus ride in on an early Sunday morning was filled with bright eyed, energetic little athletes and many coffee craving volunteers. Songs and cheers streamed through the bustling streets of Siem Reap as we made our way to the field.

It was great for the kids to meet up with their friends from last year as well as make some new ones while having fun exercising and showing off some of their new skills.

ABCs would like to send a proper thanks to Jim, Sherry, and all of the gang at Globalteer, with a special thanks to Coach Charlie, Coach Flo, and Teacher Sitha for all of their dedication and hard work.

I know I can!

Run of SHAME

Posted by Tammy D on September 25, 2012 at 7:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Over 100 competitors participated in the inaugural Reaper's Run of Shame on Sat 15 Sept. The Run was organised for those people who are not quite capable of running a half or full marathon, and the race was held as a fundraiser for ABCs and Rice.

Competitors were encouraged to have some fun whilst running the 1km route from Fresh @ Chilli Si-Dang to the Warehouse. They were dressed like they hadn't been to bed yet, or at least in some sort of interesting costume.

The 30-odd who were ready at the start were joined soon after by 70 of the Hash House Harriers, dressed resplendently in red frocks complete with fake boobies.

3 competitors bounced the whole way on space-hoppers, 2 travelled on crutches and one team dressed as doctors pushed a wheelchair whose occupant had a broken leg.

Prizes were sponsored by local businesses and there were plenty to hand out. ABCs volunteer Jay took out 1st place with Globalteer's Flo and Ryan pulling 2nd and 3rd respectively. Other prizes were awarded to Best Team Effort, Most Creative Costume and Most Creative Way of Getting to the Finish Line, as well as Cutest Competitor and Most Shameful, amongst others.

All up, the event raised over $2000 to go towards medical costs at ABCs and Rice. A further $1000 was raised through an accompanying Walk of Disorderliness held in Torquay, Australia.

Most importantly, a great day was had by all with comments and feedback such as "You made the whole town smile" and "The best day I've had in Siem Reap so far". See you all next year for the 2013 Run of Shame.

ABCs Shining Star

Posted by Tammy D on August 25, 2012 at 7:15 AM Comments comments (0)


This months Shining Stars are the many friends of our very own Peter and Ros Raynes who, from back home in Australia have helped them fund the majority of the rice we use both for Breakfast Club and for the monthly rice drops to the village families. As rice is a commodity, the price fluctuates and is currently sitting at $24 per 50 Kg bag. We just completed a rice drop and we used 12 x 50 Kg bags for this. Now that Breakfast Club is up and running we may be looking at an increase in the monthly order, 20 bags a month is going to cost us $480, part of the monthly operational costs of ABCs and Rice. The photo shows Ros handing out the 3.5 Kg bag of rice which is issued to every child once a month.

Breakfast Club goes Supersize!

Posted by Tammy D on August 25, 2012 at 7:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Breakfast Club goes Supersize!

The Breakfast Club is open to all students now that the kitchen is fully operational. We have running water, rice cookers, a pantry, a fridge and a new Kitchen manager Mr. Sann who is now running the kitchen and cooking the breakfasts.

Breakfast is the staple steamed rice, supplemented with nutritional food such as vegetables, eggs, and soups.

We are running 2 settings, one at 6 AM and one at 7.15 AM. Kids who come in the afternoons are coming in for breakfast early before heading off in our truck to government school.

Just as a reminder as to the 'why' of breakfast club,

Breakfast Club is key in our ability to offer an education. Many of our children have very limited access to food at home, and nutritional values are low in priority in a family who can barely conquer the pangs of hunger. Starchy water with small amounts of rice is most often the meal to be shared with the family. Health issues and an inability to focus in class are the obvious result. Allowing these children at least one quality meal a day allows them the energy and focus needed to learn and play. It also relieves more of the financial burden on their struggling families. Following breakfast, each child brushes their teeth, ready to begin a day of learning.

Welcome Back!!!!!

Posted by Tammy D on August 25, 2012 at 7:00 AM Comments comments (0)

The ABCs team is growing! ABCs and Rice is lucky enough to have some expats who are keen to be involved in the organisation on a long-term basis. June 2012 saw the return of Monica, Ros, Pete and Tom and this time, for the long term. Ros and Pete are here for 12 months, Monica for 9 months and Tom permanently. Ros will fill the roles of Office Manager and Creative Design Teacher, Pete is our Project Manager, Builder and Trades Skills Teacher, Monica is doing Strategic Planning and running a leadership group with the senior students, and Tom is operating as Marketing Manager, Computer Skills Teacher and Volunteer Coordinator. It is proving very productive having people on site 5 days a week.

Cha Bryn

Posted by Tammy D on August 25, 2012 at 6:40 AM Comments comments (0)

On June 22nd, 2012 this world lost an amazing man and ABCs and Rice lost an angel.

Mr Bryn Manley came to ABCs in November 2010.A beautiful man, with a pair of knees that couldn’t keep up with his spirit rolled out of a tuk tuk outside of our school and showed a smile that melted the hearts of the staff and children alike.

An oddity, as most short-term volunteers arrive nervous and excited, waiting for direction, Bryn arrived with paper, crayons, fruit and a clear direction.

Fruit (always a hit at the center) made teacher Bryn the star attraction. That was, until it became clear that the watermelon was not for eating :/

Like a man on a mission, he sliced the fruit, while directing a teacher to translate key words, like LOOK!

Bryn sat the first group down, mouths watering, and he gave in. Instead of each drawing their own piece of fruit they ate. One piece left for all to look at and voila ART! The children were so pleased with their creations, and with the treat that it became rule for the next 2 weeks, snack, look, create.

Teacher Bryn was a legend amongst the children and made a lot of life long friends in such a short amount of time, it was plain to see that an extension was coming. It did! Once his volunteer experience through Globalteer had ended, he opted to extend. Then returned to his home in England to sort out a few things so that he could stay longer.

Before we knew it we had all become a family, working together for and at ABCs by day, collaborating and socializing by night. The children were our purpose, each other, our strength.

Bryn’s generosity and that of his friends and colleagues over-seas sponsored a full time art program. Bryn worked with an area architect to design the new art building and from there started regular lessons at each age level.

ABCs and Rice continued to grow, the art program blossomed and in March of this year we held “LOOL LOOK, LOOK”. Our first art exhibition. It was an amazing success. The monies raised were enough to re-stock the paint cupboards for at least a year, but more importantly the pride in the smiles of the children and parents involved was PRICELESS.

Cha Bryn could not have been more proud and it was so clear to see.

Sadly, it was then that we began to see the signs of his health deteriorating. Our beloved Bryn had cancer, and no amount of love was going to keep him here.

Through his last few months those of us who were so very blessed to be by his side heard the many stories of the amazing life this humble man had led.

He shared his fond memories of life in England and the U.S, of his friends, colleagues, students and family. He son, Dean, how very proud he was, and all of the adventures they had shared. And, of course his beloved wife Kathy, who he had lost to cancer long before his new life here in Cambodia.

His last few days were spent here at the Royal Angkor International Hospital. We, the adopted family were with him at all times. The hospital room was adorned with plants, family photos and the children’s artwork. I must admit, the doctors and nurses there were fabulous. Many of whom attended the funeral and memorial services that were held the following week.

It was 130am on Friday the 22nd when he took his last breath. We stayed with him for a couple of hours more. If I can say one thing is for sure, it is that he did go peacefully in his sleep, surrounded by love.

We held a funeral for him on Monday, June 25th at noon at Wat Damnak (a local Buddhist Pagoda) where the children of ABCs joined. Afterwards, the children and their parents were sent off and friends joined at one of his favorite restaurants for sandwiches provided by the staff, and a toast of J&B with coke.

The school remained closed, through until that Wednesday morning, when we held a celebration of life party. There was food for the children, and Bryn's music playing loudly throughout the school yard (mostly Don Henley and Dolly Parton). We spoke briefly of our love and sorrow for teacher Bryn; then the children were asked to go off and write a message or create a painting for their beloved teacher. As the children came back with their messages and creations, they were pinned to a giant cork board, around a beautiful picture of Bryn with some of the students.

It is a beautiful tribute and will hang in the art room, where Bryn taught, forever.

We ended the day by having the children sign their names on our office /library wall. This was a project that Bryn had planned for some time, but sadly never saw happen.

Our dear friend is so greatly missed, and will forever be in our hearts.

Rest in peace Love. XO

Everything Wet!

Posted by Tammy D on July 31, 2012 at 1:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Allthings wet season


Wet season is approaching rapidly, as the rain started to fall, the dastardly Mosquitoes started to swarm.

With these mosquitoes comes disease, notably this year, a new outbreak of Chikungunya often mistaken for it's more deadly counterpart Dengue has pushed the local children's hospitals to well over capacity.

By over capacity we are talking of marquee wards where every stitch of furniture available is used for beds of the most severely ill. The children presenting with an almost stable pulse are turned away, parents will remainlining up outside emergency, just to be closer to the doctor that might be able to save a life. Others turn away in dread knowing that there's a high chance of mortality. 

It is understood in Cambodia that Dengue and Chikungunya, while untreatable and mostly non-life threatening in the west, carries a high mortality rate here, simply through malnutrition, poor hygiene and subsequent low immune systems.

How you say? 

A person afflicted with a mosquito borne virus will, in Cambodia, often develop an unrelated, but secondary infection(s). These infections can and will develop at an amazing rate, as ABC's and  Rice was severely reminded of early last week, where a child of 12 was taken to the Angkor Children’s Hospital, suffering mild malaise late morning, despite all their efforts, to passing away, in ICU mid-afternoon   Awaiting test results.

On top of the mosquito borne virus' Cambodia is experiencing heavy outbreaks of Typhoid Fever and EV71.

ABC's & Rice is experiencing very low attendance right now as a direct result of hospitalizations; the majority of these are receiving free care from the children's hospitals. However, many have been turned away due to space issues and some of the students are now too old for free treatment (15+), of course that means a private clinic and large amounts of money, average treatment is costing $180USD. Obviously, these expenses are heavily eating into the budget.

Imagine,just 3 trips to the clinic costs the same as feeding the entire school for 6 weeks!!!



St. Anne's Angels

Posted by Tammy D on June 13, 2012 at 8:30 AM Comments comments (0)

The seventh and eighth grade students at St Anne Catholic School were amongst the schools visited during the April awareness raising campaign.  We, at ABCs would like to extend a very special thanks to the staff for their warm welcome.  In particular, Mrs Jody O'Daiskey, an eighth grade teacher and childhood friend, was most welcoming, and made the day possible.

The students were very receptive and had many thoughtful comments and questions. Expect to see great things from these caring young adults in the future.  The message was clear, and the students all seemed to agree that " Anyone CAN make a difference, and EVERYONE should try".

Sending our best wishes from ABCs in Cambodia,  to all of you at St Anne in Canada.

read more at:

The ABC Herald, May edition

Posted by Tammy D on June 4, 2012 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Extra, Extra, Read all about it!

Click on the link above for the latest news

* 41 new students

* visit from Teacher Dave

* Skype session with students from London

*Teacher Beth in charge

*ABCs Shining Star Award.

* Canada shows it's support

Posted by Tammy D on April 23, 2012 at 7:50 AM Comments comments (0)

Thank you Wilma for the lolvely article