There is Angkor Krau village about 40 minutes drive from Siem Reap city where the community center is located. The place name Angkor Krau means “outside Angkor Wat”. We leave our school at 8:00 and teach art from 9:00 to 10:30. The community center is open, airy buildings without walls. The students range from about 2 years old to about 10 years old, about 25-50 children. Some of them bring their little brothers and sisters, and they draw while doing baby-sitting. The little children are not crying near their brothers and sisters, and there is no noise and they are waiting until the class is over. However, unfortunately, at the age of 15 or 16, many children have to help with housework and field work as home workers, and many children are unable to come to art lesson.
During the lesson hours, ice cream vendor comes around the village and children have a small break. The little ones who are taken by the older sister also eat deliciously, and when these little ones become a little bigger, they naturally draw pictures.
In the Sunday afternoon, our school will be fill with 65 students. Students are divided into four groups :children’s class, watercolor, drawing and oil painting with their choice.
On the fourth Sunday of the month, our school’s Khmer artists, Hay Chhoem and Sophapeak Doung, teach painting at the Bosco Culture Center near the Tonle Sap Lake.
They also participate in the annual Christmas party, etc., and deepen exchanges with the children.
There are no painting classes on Monday, but every Monday morning we have a staff meeting with art teachers.
At the meeting, we talk about art classes of the week. Sometimes, we have special art lesson from teacher Tomoko, and do workshops by international artists.
Three Cambodian art instructors take a 30 minutes drive to Oh village every Wednesday for an elementary school. There is almost no opportunity where you can learn art at public schools in Cambodia. In addition, there is no teachers who can teach art at local schools. This art lesson started in 2015, sponsored by Japanese supporters.
On the third Wednesday of the month, teacher Tomoko visits there and teaches art for nursery children. Originally, she was a high school teacher,
so at the beginning, she was puzzled by the small children. However, she used to teach there and enjoy the children’s drawings now.
In response to a request from the Tokyo International Aid Group, ASAP, we are conducting business trip art classes at two elementary schools in a village about an hour’s drive from Siem Reap.
Hope nursing home children come by car or tuk-tuk to paint. Children from preschool to junior high school are drawing as they wish. Kasahara-sensei asks a big child if there is enough food besides teaching the picture. When they hear that rice and seasonings are going to run out, they go to the market later to buy them and deliver them to nursing homes. We also support living so that children can live without worrying about food.
We have been conducting business trip art classes at the school for the blind and deaf, Krusa Thami, which is run by the Cambodian government in Siem Reap, where the partnership began in February 2020.
The students are children who live in the dormitory of the school and interact in sign language. In the first class, we conducted classes with children with the cooperation of sign language school staff.
I would like to continue my classes here so that children with disabilities in Cambodia can enjoy the joy of drawing, even a little bit.
We provide classes for children at a nursing home (New Child Care Center) in the suburb of Siem Reap, supported by a Japan International Cooperation Agency.
In the past, we traveled to their facilities on business trips, but now our children are riding two tuk-tuk.
With the support of World Assistance for Cambodia, ACC Hope, KDDI Foundation, and individual supporters, Ratanakiri, Preah Vihear, Odd Menchai, I have been visiting Banteay Mienchei, Battambang, Pailin, Prey Ben, Svay Rieng, Kampot, Kep, etc. for business trips.