Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Somaly Mam 2.0 gets green light from US



Somaly Mam 2.0 gets green light from US

Somaly Mam 2.0 gets green light from US

Disgraced anti-sex trafficking activist Somaly Mam’s new charity – which is headed by former staff of her fallen foundation, a Hollywood actress and a PR guru – announced yesterday that it has been given the green light in the US.

Following her high-profile fall from grace last year after a Newsweek article alleged that she had fabricated elements of her back story and coached girls into giving false accounts of being trafficked, Mam resigned from her multimillion-dollar foundation, which was later shuttered.

But in December, Mam – who has refuted the allegations – sought donations to open a new organisation, The New Somaly Mam Fund: Voices of Change.

The fund, which will combine elements of the work done by Mam’s local NGO Afesip and the Somaly Mam Foundation (SMF), announced yesterday that it had been officially named a tax-exempt nonprofit organisation in the US.

According to the fund’s 2015 business plan, Mam will report to former SMF staffer Rigmor Schneider. Founding board members include Jonathan Marder, whose company launched a PR offensive on Mam’s behalf last September, and actress Susan Sarandon.

The organisation, which will employ about 37 full-time staff and expects to generate more than $682,000 this year, will maintain legal entities in the US and Cambodia in order to “protect the Cambodian team if anything were to jeopardize the US operations as has happened in the past”, it says.

MOST VIEWED

  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    The Ministry of Health has issued a directive on the treatment of people who have tested positive for the highly transmissible Omicron coronavirus variant, following a suggestion from Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of January 21. The directive permits home quarantine for those who

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • Cambodia’s first ever anime festival kicks off Jan 22 at capital’s F3 centre

    Phnom Penh's first ever Anime Festival will bring together fans, artists, shops and other local businesses with ties to the Japanese animation style for cosplay competitions, online games, pop-up shops and more on January 22, with Friends Futures Factory (F3) hosting. F3 is a project that

  • Demining rat ‘hero’ Magawa dead at 8

    A landmine-hunting rat that was awarded a gold medal for heroism for clearing ordnance from the Cambodian countryside has died, his charity said on January 11. Magawa, a giant African pouched rat originally from Tanzania, helped clear mines from about 225,000sqm of land – the equivalent of 42

  • Hun Sen gets 4th Covid shot, urges compatriots to follow

    Prime Minister Hun Sen and his wife Bun Rany on January 14 received their fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine and called on compatriots to follow suit as the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to spread in the community. This marks the launch of Cambodia's fourth-dose vaccination campaign,

  • Fourth dose Covid booster drive jabs 43K in two days

    In the first two days of the fourth-dose Covid-19 vaccination campaign, more than 43,000 people volunteered to get the jabs, while over 4.6 million people have received a third shot. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said that fourth-dose vaccinations, which began on January 14 exclusively with the Pfizer