The Cambodia Kantha Bopha Foundation began the “10,000 Riel-10,000 Donors” campaign on International Children’s Day, aiming to promote the spirit of “Khmer helping Khmer” through donations to the sustainable operation of the Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospitals.
Chan Narith – undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Economy and Finance who also serves as chairman of the Secretariat of the foundation – said on May 31 that the one-month campaign aims to inspire 10,000 people to donate 10,000 riel ($2.50) each.
“We will need more than one day to reach our goal, but we chose June 1 to launch as it’s International Children’s Day – a very special day for our children’s hospitals,” he said.
According to the Cambodian-run foundation – established to help support the Kantha Bopha hospitals – donors can contribute funds through https://bit.ly/3jEtL8I or use a QR Code.
“We would like to thank all of our donors for helping to save the children of Cambodia in the spirit of ‘Khmer Helping Khmer’. Children’s smiles brighten up the future of Cambodia!” said the foundation in a social media post.
Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospital was established in 1992 by the late Dr Beat Richner. It now has more than 2,500 Cambodian doctors, nurses and staff. On average, it annual operating budget is about $40 million.
Every day, the five Kantha Bopha hospitals in Cambodia treat more than 2,000 children. Since its inception, the hospital has saved the lives of more than 17 million children, it said.
“Our hospitals participate in providing free health services to children and pregnant women from all walks of life. They play an important role in promoting social welfare and contribute to reducing maternal and infant mortality by strengthening and expanding the efficiency of health services in the Kingdom,” said Narith.
The foundation said in January that it received more than $20 million in donations last year.
Sun Cheko, a resident of Phnom Penh, said he will donate money to the campaign as it will help the Cambodian children who suffer from poverty and rely on Kantha Bopha for treatment.
He said 10,000 riel could buy a cup of coffee – which would be finished in 10 minutes – or it could save the lives of Cambodian children.
“For me, this is a charity we should all support. It isn’t much money per person, so we should encourage the people we know to join in as well. I don’t know exactly how many people they treat each year, by I remember that my nieces were treated there,” he said.
Song Kosal – director of the Volunteer for Humanity Organisation – backed the campaign, saying that supporting the foundation was like supporting oneself because the hospital provided treatment without discrimination.
He said that youths should wake up and participate in humanitarian work. It is more useful than wasting valuable time hanging out, gambling, playing games or surfing Facebook all day, he added.
“I call on the youth of TikTok to help promote this campaign to their peers. Young people seem to focus a lot on TikTok, so they should contribute to humanitarian activities through that medium,” he said.