JHH Middle School #421

Since 2009, our school has been running successfully in Prek Kroch Village, Phom Thom Commune. The number of students in grades 7-9 has continued to grow until there are now 207: 114 girls and 93 boys. They are progressing very well.

Suos Sokna, our hubmaster and English teacher, reports monthly on the English and computer classes that he is teaching. The classes are large but the students are eager and enthusiastic.

Each year we pay for his salary ($3500) and for the salary ($5400) of the nurse. Then there is the generator and the water filter ($750). Without these annual subsidies, the school would not be able to function at a high level. With all of this, the students are flourishing.

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English Class

English Class

Computer Class

Computer Class

History of our School

“Train a child in the way to live and she will not swerve from it even in old age.” (Proverbs 22:6)

Nicholas Kristof challenged us to help build a school in Cambodia so girls will not be forced into prostitution. As he wrote in December, 2006, “Literate girls not only are in less danger of being trafficked, but later they have fewer children, care for their children better and are much better able to earn a decent living.”

Education has a very high value in Jewish life. The study of Torah and Talmud sharpens our minds, young and old alike, and opens up the possibilities of a good and meaningful life. We want to extend these possibilities for a decent future to the young people of Cambodia. They are bright, and they want to learn.

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What our school is like

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We have donated the money to have a school building constructed in Lvea Em in the Kandal Province. It has five rooms, so operating double shifts with fifty students in each class, some 500 will one day be learning at the JHH school. There is a generator and ten new computer stations on line through the satellite dish on the roof. There is a well and a filter, a specially trained English/computer teacher and so much more.

Once there was a boy who could not read or write. All he knew were the names of the letters of the alphabet. He would sit outside the school room and recite them over and over again, hoping that someday they would join together to make words and paragraphs. One day, the teacher heard him and realizing how eager he was to learn, she invited him into the class.

That’s what twenty-five of us did on Thursday, February 19th, 2009. Like that teacher, we invited the first sixty-nine bright youngsters to enter their new middle school. We shared in their excitement and enthusiasm. We brought in nearly 1300 pounds of clothing, book supplies and sports equipment. We played jump rope and soccer, used yo-yo’s, made drawings and balloon sculptures and gave out school bags filled with supplies. But most of all, we embraced and were embraced by these wonderful, exuberant children.

Now they have hope for a much better future.

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