Today I had a special meeting. The meeting was at the request of the Deputy Prime Minister of Cambodia. I first met the Deputy PM in June at the dedication of our new children’s center.
I am always aware of the constant poverty in Cambodia, and on this trip, covering some 8 provinces on the western side of Cambodia I found myself unable to help time and time again. The one thing that gives me comfort while living among such poverty is that I was able to help about 100 kids this week have an opportunity to get education, eat good food, and have opportunities that all the other people I met could probably never even imagine.
In 1985 Steve Hyde built a church to provide a place of refuge for the community after a huge flood in the community of Malanday, Marikina, Manila in the Philippines. During Typhoon Ketsana, the community was again destroyed by the flooding, but 26 people were able to take refuge in the church building.
Last week Typhoon Ketsana flooded much of northern Cambodia. Most rivers broke their banks and flooding and destroying an estimated 75,000 acres of rice fields, just as they are nearing harvest time. 11 people died as the strong winds collapsed their houses. Most of the dead were women and children. Roads were destroyed, crops destroyed, schools flooded, and typical of most rapid responses, they simply pass out a box of instant ramen noodles, a bottle of soy sauce and about 10 pounds of rice to each victim. A week later, the photographers are gone and so is the not so healthy food, but the roads are still washed out, the fields are destroyed, the schools are still knee deep in mud and water. We can help some of those affected in a tangible way.