19 April 2011

By Jennifer and Carolin

It was the experience we were looking for!

Name: Jennifer and Carolin                                                              
Date of report: March 28, 2011
Work place/community at SCC: Battambang
Position/function: HIV/ Aids program volunteer
Education: examined nurse
Years of post-graduation work experience: 5 years
Work experience abroad: -
Duration of voluntary service: 7 months                                           
Accommodations during voluntary service: apartment house

We started working every day at 8 o´clock and met the SCC staff in the office at the Norea Pagoda. We discussed the day and which people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV) we have to visit. Afterwards we went to the homes of the PLHIV. We checked the health of the PLHIV and treated small opportunistic diseases like headache, stomach ache, skin disease or diarrhea. Further we took part at support group meetings for HIV infected people together with the monks and nuns in the pagoda. When we had some time we conducted an education in hygiene or we went together with the PLHIV to the hospital to pick up new boxes of medicine and to check the CD4 count. 

As we were the first long term volunteers, we did not receive that much of information beforehand, but working with SCC was the experience we were looking for. We caught a deeper view into the Khmer culture than we ever imagined in advance. Fortunately we received support in every situation, both at work and in our free time. Besides the volunteer work we also created a circle of donors in Germany. By creating our own donor circle we could start some income generations for PLHIV, build houses, buy several bicycles for the poorest HIV affected children and a lot of other things.

Moreover we organized a “Happy Happy program”-trip with up to 50 OVCs. We also made Mr Bunchhen learn 20 English words and he was able to forget 30! 
Although we experienced a cultural and a language barrier in the beginning, we made a lot of new friends and Cambodia became like a second home for us. It is like having a second family abroad.

To us SCC is the most honest organization we ever met. We were amazed by the professionalism of their work and the Buddhist approach and philosophy throughout SCC.

Please have a look at the J&C Foundation that was founded by the two young ladies to raise funds for the SCC's programs.www.jc-foundation.de

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