Human and Hope Association came about in March 2011 when a group of villagers saw an absence of education in their commune. They knew that education was the key to alleviating poverty in Cambodia, as many had not received the opportunity to be educated themselves.
This group of local Cambodians decided to teach English at a Buddhist pagoda to community members at a small fee of 50 US cents per student each month in order to cover their costs. Over the next 18 months, the volunteer team recruited students through word of mouth, posting announcements at the local primary school and gaining the support of the Monks who preached to the community.
In October 2012, an Australian living in Siem Reap was introduced to the team through her best friend who volunteered there. Observing how motivated the Khmer volunteers were, she started working as our Operations Manager, with the goal to initiate new projects, support the team with new skills and ensure a sustainable future for the organisation.
Two years later, with financial support from our Australian partner organisation, Human and Hope Association Inc., a new community centre was built 4km away from the pagoda. We now focus on education, vocational training and community support and are committed to achieving great outcomes rather than just focusing on outputs.
Human and Hope Association is a unique NGO as not only do we no longer accept foreign volunteers, but as of July 2016, through the empowerment driven by these programs, we have become entirely locally-operated.