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Slices of Siem Reap


Siem Reap is simultaneously winding down businesses, schools and working mindsets

whilst winding up into holiday and party mode.

Khmer New Year is here! Starting on Thursday 14th April and continuing until Saturday

the 16th April, this is the biggest event in the Cambodian Calendar.

So what can you expect? A big influx of people from the countryside, a marked increase

of revelers out and about in restaurants and bars, and many private parties keeping

you up all night with loud music and laughter. Water and talcum powder fights will

erupt at any time and in any place, and families and friends will be seen participating

in traditional Khmer New Year games. Look out for some tasty treats made especially

for the celebrations; bananas and rice wrapped with green pancakes is a personal


Many Cambodians visit the temples during this time, so it might be an idea to steer

clear of Angkor Wat if you don't like crowds. Most tourist restaurants and bars will

stay open for the celebrations, with a few exceptions including Linga Bar and the

Khmer Kitchen.

"Crocs, Cocks and Rocks," an exhibition by Englishwoman Sasha Constable,

is on show until May 23rd at the FCC. Sculptures, prints, photography and paintings

are on display and for sale in the upstairs, up-market restaurant.

Sasha has been living in Cambodia since 2000 and has been involved in many art projects,

including the Peace Art Project Cambodia.

Inspirations from her life in Cambodia can be clearly seen in the pieces on show.

Sangkheum Centre for children is a joint project between local NGO KADO (Khmer Angkor

Development Organization) and Progetto Continenti, an Italian NGO.

It opened its doors three years ago to 40 orphaned children. The center provides

them three meals a day, a roof over their heads, an education and, most importantly,

a loving and caring family.

They also monitor and support 40 children in surrounding villages and have an Agricultural

Training Centre attached, which gives 20 disadvantaged young adults the opportunity

to learn farming skills.

Visiting the centre is uplifting and inspiring and gives an excellent example of

what good work many of the NGOs in Siem Reap are accomplishing. Volunteer work is

available, and, of course, any donation would be very much appreciated. Contact Sunsoley

on 012 858 015 to organize a visit.



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