Sovann has the ambition and the intellect to pursue an academic path. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have the privilege of having a family that could support him through university, forcing the 27-year-old to put his dreams of becoming a lawyer on hold for an entire decade, and find other ways to get by.
As a child, Sovann had joined a pagoda in rural Cambodia and became a monk. In Cambodia, poor children often approach pagodas or monasteries to live in a monk community. This is many times the only way in which children can continue to receive basic education in public school. They practice Buddhist customs, attend school, live off of food donations, and sleep at the pagoda.
After 11 years, at age 25, Sovann left his pagoda and moved to Cambodia’s capital Phnom Penh in hopes of finding a job to save money until he could eventually afford to study at university.
Thomlang – Cambodian Youth Support decided to include Sovann in our program and support the ambitious student in obtaining a law degree at the Royal University of Law and Economics.
Read his story in his own words below:
Hello dear readers,
My name is Sovann and I am 27 years old.
My family background is very complicated. I have one sister, but I don’t know where she is because we haven’t had contact for many years. I also don’t know where my father is. My mother and my father broke up when I was a little child. After my mother found a new husband, we had to move from my home village to a different province. In 2009, my mother told me to become a monk, because she could not support me to study in school anymore. So I had to say goodbye to her and I started living in a pagoda. Sadly, my mother got very sick and died in 2015.
I was a monk for eleven years, from 2009 until 2020. Then I started to work in Phnom Penh because I wanted to earn money and follow my dream. I really really always wanted to study at university. I want to study law because I want to become a lawyer. I want to help people to get justice and equality. This is my goal.
However, I don’t have enough money to pay for my tuition. This is why I need help from this NGO.
Now I am so lucky and so happy that this NGO helps me to study at university. I work as a seafood seller at one shop in Phnom Penh and I can also live at my workplace. The only help that I need is to pay for my university and my books and I am so thankful that you make all of this possible for me.
Thank you again for helping me!
I wish you all the best,
CYS will cover Sovann’s tuition and provide him with school supplies for the entirety of his studies. We will keep in close touch with him in an effort to ensure that all of his needs are met and that he can focus on his education while balancing his job responsibilities.
Through your donations, you enable Sovann to pursue an academic degree, which will not only have a long-lasting positive impact on his life but also on his community.