POUR un Sourire d’Enfant, (PSE), created in March, 1993 to support underprivileged and under-educated children in Cambodia, last month initiated an ambitious co-operative project with Italian international NGO Intervita Onlus that aims to help an estimated 1600 trainees for the job market.
Since 1996, PSE’s main focus has been children working and living in precarious conditions in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville.
It provides these children with education and vocational training – among other highly specialised and innovative programs – that are constantly updated and tightly related to today’s job market.
Under the support of Intervita Onlus, PSE has launched its three-year FLIP (Family Livelihood Improvement Project) with the objective of increasing the educational opportunities of children by facilitating the professional and social rehabilitation of their parents.
More specifically, the project aims at preventing children from dropping out of, or being excluded from, school because of poverty.
Poor households from southwest Phnom Penh will be supported through skills and business training, employment opportunities and affordable loans.
Co-operative partner Intervita Onlus is an independent NGO that implements projects in developing countries to improve the living conditions of populations in the poorest areas in Asia, Africa and South America. They will be joined by a third partner.
The micro-financing will be held by that partner, The Chamroeun Micro-Credit Institution, which will grant micro-loans to 1,000 people.
Antenna Technology France will be responsible for the sanitary aspect of the project, installing water kiosks in four public primary schools (Boeng Salang, Steung Meanchey, Dambok Kpos and Sorla primaries) and distributing a nutrit-ional supplement called Spirulina, aimed at strengthening the health of those suffering from malnutrition.
PSE will be responsible for implementing the four training courses selected according to the demands of the job market: cooking, cleaning, construction and sewing.
Through its employment centre, it will also handle the monitoring of each supported family.
As a result, and based on preliminary and feasibility studies, PSE believes it can expect more than 1,600 trainees to directly benefit from training, job-search support tools and micro credit; as many as 3,000 children will benefit from the water kiosks installed in their schools; and Spirulina will be distributed to as many as 1,000 children every year.