COLT offers sustainable help to children and families in Cambodia, in the areas of temporary and long-term residential care, education, medical and social support, sports activities and environmental awareness.
Sustainability is a key concept for all our activities. This entails more than the obvious activities to preserve the environment – which are an important part of this. Sustainability requires the conviction that, in order to book any durable progress, the involved families are aware of their problems and are willing to dedicate themselves to developing skills that will ultimately empower them to confidently face any challenges in life.
Temporary and long-term
COLT offers temporary shelter in crisis situations and long-term residential care. Regardless of the duration of the shelter, every child is provided a safe place to live, a sufficient and healthy diet, health care and a good education. Together with parent(s)/care taker(s), a family action plan is created for every child, in order to facilitate a successful reintegration. Through regular home visits and contact by phone, progress is checked and documented and, if possible, a reintegration plan initiated. After reintegration, there is a period of follow-up, where the wellbeing of the child in the new situation is monitored and the entire family provided with advice and counselling.
Together with the Sreyka Smile Association, COLT runs a day care for children below six years old, whose parents often work on the dump site or have serious issues within the family. The day care provides a safe and healthy place for the children to play and develop, while enabling the parents to work on their home situation. In return, the parents sign an agreement stating they will actively participate in a family development plan, which they set up together with a social worker. The family development plan describes a set of steps the parents need to make to escape the poverty circle. Important parts of this programme are house calls and workshops, where the parents are educated in vital practical skills like money management and parenting skills, while for some people it could also include a language or vocational training. The aim is that the parents are able to earn an income and develop personally, so that the child can progress into general education and will no longer be regarded as a source of income.
COLT offers a supplementary programme of lessons for children attending the local schools. With a curriculum that in addition to English, also provides classes in IT, music, art and sports, COLT strives to build a strong foundation for their future. Simultaneously, COLT cooperates with the public school in the area, in order to collectively ensure the safe development of the children in our community.
Social and medical care
The medical clinic in the community centre is run by the medical team of Chibodia, a German partner NGO that has supplied free medical care and medicines since 2011. They cooperate closely with COLT’s social workers in order to identify family problems in an early stage, so a plan can be made to for intervention or treatment.
Through sports COLT aims to teach both our community children as well as those in our shelter, to work together in a safe way. The sports pitch has a central place in the community centre, providing a safe spot to have fun for all kids, while enabling the staff to supervise. Sports classes are also a returning part of the curriculum.
A healthy environment is essential for the development of a community. A lack of knowledge and social facilities explains why many people to act in a way that is harmful to themselves as well as the environment. Through numerous initiatives like Self-Help groups and activity clubs, COLT injects knowledge and develops environmental awareness from a young age.