ROTA volunteers reflect on Cambodia experience | Press Releases

ROTA volunteers reflect on Cambodia experience
14 May 2013

ROTA volunteers reflect on Cambodia experience

In the presence of Her Excellency Sheikha Mayassa, Chairperson of ROTA

Reach Out To Asia (ROTA) today celebrated the success of its recent volunteer trip to Cambodia by hosting a Reflection Event for volunteers, parents and school officials involved in the visit.

Student volunteers, parents, teachers and school officials took part in an inspirational event at the Museum of Islamic Art as volunteers showed pictures of from their trip and recited testimonials, telling the audience how the trip had increased their interest in volunteering and helped them better understand the challenges communities in Cambodia face.

Congratulating volunteers for their commendable service in Cambodia, Her Excellency Sheikha Mayassa, Chairperson of ROTAsaid, I would like to thank you , on behalf of ROTA, for playing a role in fulfilling our goal of ‘education for all.’  The impact that you have left on the local community in Cambodia will be felt for many generations to come.”

Through trips to Pakistan, Nepal, Indonesia as well as Cambodia, ROTA has created a movement of volunteers and responsible global citizenswithin Qatar who make a positive impact on the lives of hundreds of communities across Asia. ROTA believes our youth must look beyond the privileges available at home if they are to enhance our country’s reputation and its position in the world, ”Her Excellency added.

This was ROTA’s fourth Volunteer Trip to Cambodia,” said Mr. Essa Al Mannai, ROTA Director. “Even though previous trips were hugely successful, this year was especially rewarding because we were able to send our second all-female group of Independent School student volunteers to see ROTA’s educational and community development work for themselves, as well as experience the reality of life for young people in Cambodia.”

In collaboration with ROTA’s Cambodian partner the Monithapana Foundation and under the sponsorship of Vodafone-Qatar, the volunteers from Al Bayan Independent Secondary School for Girls, Al Sailiyah Independent Secondary School for Girls, the Qatar Independent School and the Amna Bint Wahab Independent Secondary School for Girls travelled to Cambodia at the beginning of March.

 “Vodafone Qatar believe it is important to provide volunteers with opportunities to really make an impact on children in Asia and, in this particular case, in a high school in Cambodia, which is why we greatly value our 5-year partnership with Reach Out To Asia”said Ms. Dana Haidan, the Head of Corporate Social responsibility at Vodafone Qatar .

“Through sponsoring volunteer trips in ROTA’s International Outreach, we see volunteers come back from the experience with a whole different way of viewing the world. This trip is particularly important, as it shows that females in Qatar can reach out and be inspiring young women. Teaching children from another country was challenging, but the volunteers stepped up to the plate to assist those communities in need of their assistance.”

During their 8-day visit, the all-female volunteer group hosted workshops for 150 students at the new ROTA-funded and supported Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen – ROTA – Khsach Kandal General and Technical High School.

In addition, the ROTA volunteers raised funds to present to the Phnom Penh Dubai Islamic School with learning materials, books, and helped distribute basic food supplies to 200 local families.

“The school in Cambodia was truly wonderful. The pupils could not have been any more polite and willing to share with us. By the end I made many friends and I have remained in touch with them since arriving home. Thank you ROTA, the experience was everything I hoped for and more,”Shaikha Shafeea Al-Marri, a student volunteer told the Reflection Event.

Another volunteer Sara Ibrahim Al-Housani said “Visiting Cambodia has changed me. I have come back to Doha knowing I need to do something. I must let people know about the important work ROTA is doing to create a better future for thousands of Asian children, and how they can get involved in this work.”

 

 “Without a doubt, the different activities in Cambodia challenged the students to reflect on what ROTA’s mission to provide quality primary and secondary education really means, most importantly to witness how we put our ‘education for all ’mission into action,” added Essa Al Mannai.

 

At the Reflection Event, volunteers and teachers expressed their sincere gratitude to ROTA for organizing such a life-changing experience for all involved. Several volunteers reflected that they now looked at their lives differently and were much more appreciative of their material possessions. Volunteer Program staff encouraged them all to maintain their interest in volunteering and get involved in local community-based ROTA initiatives.