We would like to introduce OEUN SOKLY, a half-orphan who experienced a childhood of hunger and forced labor, before she was abandoned by her mother. Despite never visiting a school before she came to live at our children's village at age 13 , Sokly caught up with her education, graduated school and has found her dream profession that enables her to support herself today.
Finding her dream job after being abandoned and experiencing a childhood of poverty, malnutrition and forced labor
Sokly was born in the winter of 1997 and her family's life became one of hardship after her father passed away. The siblings never attended school as both had to help their mother to earn a living with whatever work the trio could find. Eventually the situation became so hopeless that the mother decided to abandon the children and go to Malaysia in order to find stable work. Sokly and her little brother were sent to live with an aunt at first, where the living conditions for them were dire and where they went to bed hungry most nights, so that the local authorities eventually stepped in. After the government authorities contacted Kinderhilfe Kambodscha, we started processing the legal documents to bring the two children to live at our village for children immediately and they arrived on Christmas Eve of 2010.
Back then Sokly was almost 13 years old and we first registered her in the 2nd Grad as she had never attended school. She was so excited to wear a school uniform for the first time and made friends in the village as well as in school easily. Sokly turned out to enjoy studying and she worked hard for her education. Eventually, she caught up and graduated from Year 9 in 2015/16. She successfully passed Don Bosco's vocational training entrance exam and started to train at the school for "Food and Hospitality Service." She said back then: "I am on the way to achieve my dream of becoming a cook in the future. Without Kinderhilfe Kambodscha I can't imagine how my life would be and my dream of becoming a cook would have never come true."
Sokly finished her vocational training and apprenticeship and started to work as a cook in a restaurant at the International Airport in 2018. She lives on her own in Phnom Penh and even though her restaurant at the airport had to close down temporarily due to the Covid-19 pandemic, she had no problem to find another work place in her profession. Before the Covid-19 brought social distancing rules, Sokly was a frequent visitor in the KKEV-Cambodia village.