Education

Community Kindergarten Helping to End Poverty Cycle

A new kindergarten for underserved children has opened its doors in Phnom Penh’s Steung Meanchey, granting them better access to education and the start of their journey to become the country’s success stories of tomorrow and end the cycle of poverty.
Scott Neeson, Founder and Executive Director of Cambodian Children's Fund (CCF), poses for a photo with young children at a newly inaugurated community kindergarten November 24, 2022. Kiripost/Siv Channa
Scott Neeson, Founder and Executive Director of Cambodian Children's Fund (CCF), poses for a photo with young children at a newly inaugurated community kindergarten November 24, 2022. Kiripost/Siv Channa

Leading Asian drinks brand, Yeo’s Cambodia, and non-profit organization, Cambodian Children’s Fund (CCF), today gathered to officially open Yeo’s Kindergarten with the aim of improving education for underprivileged children in the capital.

The 50-child capacity kindergarten is the result of Yeo’s Cambodia’s corporate social responsibility initiative to ensure that less fortunate children get the education they deserve and gain the skill sets needed to end the cycle of poverty for good.

To officiate the five-room facility were H.E Kuoch Kou Lom-A, Director of Non-Formal Education, Chhoun Bunchhoeun, Head of Admin and Finance Unit of NC-ECCD and Deputy Director of Early Childhood Education Department, Ozgur Simsek, Managing Director Emerging Market, Yeo’s Cambodia, and Scott Neeson, Founder and Executive Director of CCF. Other senior local officials as well as members of the local community were also in attendance to witness its opening.

The $50,000 donated by Yeo’s Cambodia has enabled the second kindergarten situated south of the former Steung Meanchey landfill to be built, complete with four classrooms, four offices, motorcycle parking and a playroom.

Yeo’s Kindergarten will fill a void in this part of Steung Meanchey, an area lacking in provisions for young children’s safety or education. Due to time and money needed, families here were unable to send their children to CCF’s original kindergarten which meant children of the area’s southside were left to fend for themselves on the streets as their parents worked. Yeo’s kindergarten serves not only as an education institution but also a safe place for children during the day.

Yeo’s Kindergarten is officially inaugurated November 24, 2022. Kiripost/Siv Channa
Yeo’s Kindergarten is officially inaugurated November 24, 2022. Kiripost/Siv Channa

The initiative, A Million Cans to Build a Dream, was the work of Yeo’s team who see themselves as much more than a drinks brand, but a crucial part of society.

“The private sector has a huge role to play in society. At Yeo’s we believe that together we can build the world we want to live in. This is the reason we partnered with the fantastic CCF, that continues to make a difference for the community. A foundation that started as Scott Neeson’s dream is now a reality that serves the underprivileged and edges closer to breaking the poverty cycle, something we are hugely passionate about,” said Ozgur Simsek, Managing Director Emerging Markets, Yeo’s Cambodia.

The campaign is a momentous step in the right direction towards ending the poverty cycle in Cambodia and a testament to the positive influence the private sector has. A Million Cans to Build a Dream has now built a real addition to the community that will ensure inclusive and fair quality education is available to all, whilst promoting lifelong learning opportunities – a mission is aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.

Yeo’s Kindergarten will play a big role in supporting CCF’s strategy in delivering education, leadership training and community support programs. Yeo’s Cambodia and the CCF initiative highlights how private-public sector cooperation is needed to empower underprivileged communities and provide them with the opportunities they deserve.

“We are delighted to have this new education facility for the youngest children in the Steung Meanchey area. This provides not only a solid foundation for future study but a place for the children to receive adequate nutrition and a safe environment while the parents are at work. I am very grateful to Yeo’s for their contribution”, said Scott Neeson, Founder and Chief Executive of CCF.

CCF currently supports the education of more than 1,700 children in the bid to transform thousands of lives at the heart of Cambodia’s most underserved communities. [Partnered Content]