Kampuchea House Project, Cambodia

Kids Off The Kerb has entered into a partnership with Kampuchea House (Australia) Inc. to support an orphanage in the Sotnikum District, about 40 kilometres from the town of Siem Reap where the Temples of Angkor are located.

About 40 children live at the Kampuchea House orphanage and food, clothing, shelter, education, family reunification and health are the focus of the project’s work. The majority of the children come from desperately poor families, who cannot, for the time being, look after their children.

The children live in traditional style houses, which are wooden structures on concrete posts. Rather than palm leaves for the roof, these houses have a more solid construction so that rain water can be collected for drinking purposes. Solar panels provide the electricity and bore water is pumped from a bore 52 metres deep.

The children live in family groupings of six. Each grouping, or family, has either boys or girls of varying ages. A house mother is responsible for the running of the house which enables the children to live in an environment similar to that of a traditional Cambodian family. Meals are the responsibility of each house mother and are cooked and eaten in the community centre. This provides the children with a greater sense of community.

An orphanage manager lives on-site and a director, a Cambodian national, is responsible for the day-to-day running of the complex, including hiring staff, paying wages and accounts and purchasing all requirements.

Thao Dan Project, Vietnam

In addition to its projects in Australia, Kids Off The Kerb supports a children’s home in Ho Chi Minh City. The home is run by a local Vietnamese not-for-profit group called Thao Dan. Thao Dan was founded in 1992 by a group of volunteers to support and protect street children in Ho Chi Minh City.

About 10 children sleep at the Thao Dan safe house each night and go to school from there. The support provided assists with the provision of staffing, as well as the children’s food, education, clothing and health needs. The children range in age from 8-15 years old and are referred to the home via the police, the local area authorities and local child focused organisations. Assistance is also provided for an outreach worker in the district who supports children and very poor families on the street.

As well as the children who live in the home, many other children spend time there. For example, many parents who do not have the necessary paperwork for their children to attend school go out onto the streets each day and leave their children to attend Thao Dan’s education program. In this way, the children are fed and cared for during the day.

The Thao Dan safe house, located in the suburb of Go Vap, is made possible due to a long standing commitment of funding provided by Cabrini Health Australia.