Thanks to the generosity and elbow grease of the French battalion in Sector VI more
than 800 primary school children have a new school in Kompong Trach city in Kompot
The 870-member battalion, raised more than $5,000 to renovate a six-room school house.
Local villagers also volunteered their time and energy, and working side-by-side
with the French soldiers, the building was rehabilitated in one week.
"My parachutists worked day and night with the local population for six solid
days," Col. Elrick Irastorza, the commander of the French Battalion, said during
the opening ceremonies held on Oct. 24. "There was a feeling of real solidarity
among UNTAC and the local population."
Each member of the French battalion was asked to donate U.S. $2 towards the costs
of the project. Many gave $10 or $20.
"We just wanted to do a little something for the children of this place,"
said Col. Irastorza. "It's the little things that make the big differences in
an operation such as this."