During your time in Cambodia, you’ll work with Rehash Trash, a social organization for the Green Gecko Project. Their mission is to empower disadvantaged Khmer women who make a living repurposing plastic litter. You will work alongside these women to collect plastic bags from the streets of a nearby local village. As the hot day wears on, you will return to the Rehash Trash base to sanitize the bags you collected. Then, “upcycle” your trash by making your own souvenir bracelet or key ring for practice. By the end of your workshop experience, you will also have made some products for the Khmer women to sell, contributing to the local economy while keeping Cambodia clean.
In the midst of recovering from its turbulent history, Cambodia’s sprawling rainforests and farming villages currently face the real threat of climate change: U.S. satellite data shows a devastating loss of forest cover from 72.1% in 1973 to 46.3% in 2014.
In the Banteay Srei area, you’ll collaborate with the Ten Thousand Trees team. Their mission is to plant 10,000 Moringa tree saplings per year in the Siem Reap region. Members from the Ten Thousand Trees organization will select a well-researched area of land for you to plant in. At the end of your time here, you can leave knowing you did your part to reverse the effects of deforestation in Cambodia.
Not far from Angkor Wat is the Apopo Visitor Center. This non-profit organization is dedicated to the task of removing landmines in Cambodia with the help of mine-detection rats. (Rest assured knowing that these rats won’t be harmed since they are too small to set off any explosives!) Learn from the men and women who work here and how their efforts positively impact the communities living near or on the minefields.
Here, you’ll have a chance to see how the trained rats detect the mines, watch a video about the work that this organization does around Cambodia and in other parts of the world, and take part in a question and answer session with a professional de-miner. Your participation will support the team and raise awareness about this issue that affects communities all over Cambodia.
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