August 2016 -- Elizabeth, Sierra, Mick & Jennie are in route back to the U.S. after spending the past month in Cambodia, assessing the needs and current realities in country. This was the first trip of this kind for DSI and will help to inform the model and approach being developed to carry out DSI's mission work.
During their month in-country, the team met with 15 organizations as well as other stakeholders working in various capacities for people with disabilities and learned a great deal from amazing people leading these organizations (many Cambodians with disabilities themselves) in ways that cannot ever be expressed just in numbers and words.
A few trip highlights include:
Meeting with organization directors, founders, staff members, families, teachers, government officials, and others stakeholders (in both urban and rural parts of the country) working with amazing passion and dedication to raise awareness, promote inclusion and better lives of Cambodians with disabilities.
Having the honor to meet Bun Rany Hun Sen, the First Lady of Cambodia and President of the Cambodian Red Cross as she addressed a crowd of children with disabilities and the parents and organizations who support them with our good friend Chan Sarin and his organization, Hands of Hope Community at the Rabbit School in Phnom Penh.
The greatest highlight was seeing and hearing the enthusiasm for DSI's involvement and desire to work together to address existing needs. The needs are huge, but so is the passion to better the future.
It is our goal now to analyze themes that emerged and find ways to expand these collaborative partnerships to increase the quality of life for people with disabilities and the families and programs that support them.
You can also read our E-news Update introducing the team members involved in this trip here >>