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Dara is from Sonikom district in Siem Reap Cambodia.

In March 2017 he has took on the responsibility of educating 20 children from a village that do not have access to education.

Sarah Pycroft, Project Manager at ABOUTAsia Schools says “education in Cambodia is meant to be free… but it’s not. The Government subsidy to schools per student, per year is as low as $1.75 according to our own research. Because of this teachers are paid next to nothing, forcing them to charge students for this and that.”


The children range from 6 - 14 years of age. 

Dara is passionate about teaching & providing children with an education.

So much so that he is teaching the children in an abandon structure, using only handmade desks, a white board, books & stationery.

This is only made possible because of the amazing work of  Margo and Stephen, an Australian couple who personally fund this cause.

When he was 9, he was left with his aunts and grandparents because his parents couldn't afford to send him to school.

After finishing high school in 2014, he got a job at Angkor Bodhi Tree retreat to fund his university. Working during the day & studying in the evening.  

He will complete his study soon & officially become a teacher.

In most schools -

“They will only teach about half the curriculum in the Government allotted hours and then they’ll teach the other portion that the students need in private classes.

This means that the students have to pay so the teachers can substitute their other income and so education becomes too expensive for many students.”

Because of this education is not readily available to all children and the drop-out rates are huge. “It depends what statistics you look at but generally it’s about 92% of kids that enrol in primary school to start with… only about 35% of them finish primary school to progress to middle school and only 19% finish secondary school.”

Teacher training is also lagging in Cambodia – many of the rural primary school teachers have only one ‘qualification’ behind them… they finished primary school themselves.

Sarah Pycroft, Project Manager at ABOUTAsia

Education Programs 

Dara Som Chhoem 
Sonikom District 

Education is the base for social and economic development of an individual, and a country.

                  “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

Nelson Mandela

How We Help

Conscious Choice Culture will assist this project by supplying stationery & curriculum books, raise funds to support Dara in his mission & assist in securing a location to continue to educate the children.


1 x Month wages 

1 x Year wages 

2 x English Khmer dictionary 

1 x Boost - nouns & verbs with audio CD

5 x Headway curriculum book

1 x Picture English word book 

1 x Alphabet ABC color in book

2 x Junior Picture dictionary 

1 x ream white paper (picture cards)

1 x Box 30 erasers