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Youths seek to create jobs

Youths seek to create jobs

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Sam Sakada, co-founder of Small World, a collaborative workplace for young people, speaks to the Post this week. Photograph: Hong Menea/Phnom Penh Post

With different talents but similar passions, Small World is a small enterprise that brings talented young Cambodians together to learn, work and network in the new world of business.

Small World is a collaborative workplace created to ensure that young people passionate about business have access to a grateful and productive work environment. It serves as an education, networking and mini-business resource and support centre where young Cambodians can learn and build a network with others by discussing, testing and initiating new business perspectives.

Small World was created by four students, who met when they worked for the same organisation, and they started talking of beginning a business together.

Their mission is to build a platform for other young Cambodians to test, refine and launch their business ideas and improve them in order to ensure their futures.

“First, my colleague used a kitchen as an office since he didn’t have one,” said Sam Sakada. “Then, we decided to rent a house by sharing the utility bills and rental fee. That was the way we started.”

According to Sam, a person does not have to have lots of money, most billionaires in the United States started their businesses with empty pockets – now it is time for Cambodia to change its way of thinking.

The enterprise encourages youths to do what they dream. “If he or she desires to do one thing, we always motivate them to practice it in real life. They have to transfer their dreams into action. That way can guide them to be successful in their lives. Those who come and use our office have increased to around 100,” said Sam, from the initial four who began it.

The money Small World raises is used to pay for school and their study equipment.

“There are plenty of things to practice here,” said Sam. “Someone asks me what Small World is, and the answer depends on what they suppose Small World to be.”

Tum Sereyroith, a sophomore at The Institute of Technology of Cambodia (ITC), said there are diverse businesses operating at Small World. Some of the youths teach English to foreign interns in Cambodia, and some have created restaurants to serve foreign customers. They also participate in social activities, such as “Let’s do it”, a big clean-up event in Phnom Penh.

Chea Vimean Bopha, a second year student at The Royal University of Phnon Penh, said she has been coming and using the Small World office for her project of “Smiling Books”, which is a home tutor and tour guide for foreigners who’ve just arrived in the city.

Sam believes he and his colleagues, who have been struggling to create jobs for young Cambodian, will improve Cambodia. He’s also not sure that Cambodia’s youths are ready for the ASEAN Economic community in 2015, given their need for jobs not competition.

In 2015, there will be free flow of products and even jobs through ASEAN. People in the region will be able to travel to other countries without any barriers.

Sam feels Cambodian students cannot compete with other countries in the region yet since Cambodia is still developing.

“We need more time to strengthen our skills, such as technical and social skills. I strongly believe that if the young commit and strive for their dreams, everything will be successfully accomplished.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Meas Chansatya at [email protected]

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