Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Everyone's a Winner



Everyone's a Winner

Everyone's a Winner

More than 100 young hopefuls, some who had trained for several years, gathered at

the National Stadium on Aug. 28-29 to vie for a spot in the National Gymnastics Federation.

After four hours of heated competition the judges made their decision: All the contestants

were qualified, although, Tep Kreth Sasna, general manager of the federation, noted

some would need some more training. The best contestants also received awards.

The Khmer Gymnastics Federation was revived in 1980 after a five-year hiatus caused

by the upheaval of the Khmer Rouge years.

The first students practiced on hand-made equipment but many of these quit the sport

to join the National Circus Company just as they were coming into their physical

prime.

In 1986, the Khmer Gymnastics Federation was upgraded to become the national federation.

The former Soviet Union provided facilities and Bulgaria sent coaches over the next

two years, but since then no more foreign support has been made available.

World Concern assisted in making an appeal to raise money to buy new mats and equipment

to replace the old which are now in a state of disrepair.

According to Madam Sasna, who also coaches at the National Stadium Gymnasium, about

50 small boys and girls, in addition to those who took part in the recent trials,

are being trained to be future gymnasts. About 30 of them are completely dependent

on the coaches and trainers for sports clothes and food while training because their

families were too poor to support them.

"We're spending our own money earned from part-time careers to buy something

for the poorest kids to eat so that they have enough energy to work at the gymnasium

for the whole morning and afternoon,'' Sasna said, adding that she is now trying

to find support from members of the public who are willing to help these small kids

and the national gymnasium. She said members of the public who have something to

donate can come directly to the National Stadium Gymnasium and contact her.

Some agencies and companies have provided money and facilities in response to her

appeal. The Marlboro cigarette company has given U.S. $1,000, Malaysia Airlines $350,

the Australian Catholic Church $62, the Gal Ireland $ 60, U.N.-ONI some chairs with

a total worth of $40, the World Trade $30, and Concern's Callum Durward $20 and Trishatur

14 gymnastic catalogues.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh placed in two-week lockdown

    The government has decided to place Phnom Penh in lockdown for two weeks, effective April 14 midnight through April 28, as Cambodia continues to grapple with the ongoing community outbreak of Covid-19, which has seen no sign of subsiding. According to a directive signed by Prime Minister

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Hun Sen: Stay where you are, or else

    Prime Minister Hun Sen warned that the two-week lockdown of Phnom Penh and adjacent Kandal provincial town Takmao could be extended if people are not cooperative by staying home. “Now let me make this clear: stay in your home, village, and district and remain where

  • Businesses in capital told to get travel permit amid lockdown through One Window Service

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Administration has issued guidelines on how to get travel permission for priority groups during the lockdown of Phnom Penh, directing private institutions to apply through the municipality's One Window Service and limit their staff to a mere two per cent. In

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Ministry names types of business permitted amid lockdown

    The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training singled out 11 types of business that are permitted to operate during the lockdown of Phnom Penh and Takmao town, which run through April 28. Those include (1) food-processing enterprises and slaughterhouses; (2) providers of public services such as firefighting, utility and