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Sharing the Message – the whole story?

The Bulldog Trust recently invited charity trustees along to a workshop, which apart from meeting like-minded people in an impressive historic setting along the river Thames in London, encouraged us tell the whole story and not just the parts we think you want to hear.

Often we choose not to tell you the gritty stuff, mainly because we like to keep positive and demonstrate all the progress our projects make with your donations.

But why is the support needed in the first place and what happens to the youngsters that don’t receive support?


  • The Khmer Rouge took control of Cambodia on the 17th of April 1975 and ruled the country until 1979.
  • Whilst in power, they set up policies that disregarded human life, produced repression and massacres on a massive scale.
  • They turned the country into a huge detention centre, which later became a graveyard for nearly two million people.

These tragic facts and figures build up a picture of total devastation of a country having already suffered from being caught in between the American Vietnam war in the 70’s. Remnants of which are still evident today in the form of unexploded mines. It wasn’t until the turn of the millennium that Cambodia was able to get back on it’s feet and open it’s doors to tourism.

Today Cambodia is still recovering from the trauma whether it’s mourning loved ones, getting by with one leg or one arm, suffering from post-traumatic stress or surviving on $1 day to get food in their stomach. There is a stark lack of basic healthcare, education and social security.

The double edged sword of tourism has boosted the economic opportunities with the provision of jobs, local food production and the buying and selling of goods. However there are many negative impacts too which have to be carefully considered including people trafficking, setting up fake orphanages, prostitution and alcohol abuse to name but a few.

The situational needs of our young adults are not that dissimilar to teenagers in the UK or Australia in terms of finishing school, figuring out what job to do, finding work, and learning about health and relationships.

However, compounded by lack of family support, lack of housing, limited opportunities and falling foul of quick fixes in drug abuse, begging and prostitution in the ever growing tourist town of Siem Reap we must be alert to these problems and assist where we can.

These are the issues the Young Adults programmes address to enable the participants in the programmes to grow into good citizens able to secure employment and therefore look after themselves and any siblings in their care.

Posted in Diary.

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