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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - A day in the life: Ven Khemko

A day in the life: Ven Khemko

At 31, family bread-winner Ven Khemko took on more responsibility than he’d ever imagined after his marriage with his wife back in 2004. They now have two children, and with a smile he said: “I’m proud to be a father with a warm family. My wife and I try our best to face all problems head-on.”


Khemko works myriad jobs to keep his family afloat. From Monday to Friday, he teaches students computer science at the International Computer Science Centre, near Bak Touk primary school, two times per day. It’s been 10 years since he started teaching.

He takes the morning shift from 7am to 12pm, and the evening shift from 4:30pm to 7:30pm. On the weekend, he teaches students at home and takes on additional work you might find surprising.

That’s because Khemko’s not only a computer science teacher – he also designs name cards and wedding invitations.

This extra business venture is no easy task for Khemko. He has to research design and collect all the design models necessary for production, and work with enough creative ideas to keep customers satisfied.

Often, he’ll find himself working until midnight – especially, when he gets an order from a customer in a hurry.

Khemko is an every-day man with many skills and while modest, he never looks down on his work. He pays special attention to dealing with every-day problems to live a smoother life. When it comes to jobs, he said, he just keeps calm.

“I adjust my work to the circumstances,” he explained. “I prioritise and divide up my work, so I can move through my tasks smoothly.”

When Khemko gets stuck, he looks to the help of others.

“If a customer’s order is urgent for invitations or cards, I cannot refuse them, so I produce them directly from a broker,” he explained. “I still make a bit of profit and I keep connections with my customers.”

Most importantly – as a husband and a father – Khemko never forgets the importance of family.

“Even though I’m so busy, I still have time for my family,” he reflected. “When work is stressful, I never take it out on my family. Compared to my career, my family is more important to me because my home is a place that can give me happiness – jobs just give us food.”

Although Khemko’s living standards are humble, he is satisfied with the life he’s made.

In the future, he plans to implement the skills he’s gained from his many jobs and, one day, open his own printing house or computer school – depending on where life brings Khemko.



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