Cambodian Youth Outdoor Leadership Program – Part I

What do you think we should do to make a positive change? You might think of making rules, policy, educate people, talk to them about the consequences, etc. Well, you are not wrong. Here’s something you might not think of. For us, to make a change, changing people’s behavior is the most important. Why? Imagine, if your friend doesn’t like to exercise, for example. If you force or make rules for him/her to do exercise, they might do it, but they might not like it, though. But, if you encourage them or inspire them, long enough, the change will happen, by their behavior! You might think that it’s hard – yes, it is hard! A change will never happen overnight, it takes time, gradually step by step. But why are we talking about changing here? Is it related to the content? To find out, please enjoy reading the post till the end!

Last year, we had an exploration called Outdoor Leadership, which we learned about outdoor skills in different areas then went out to the outdoor world to explore more. And this year, we created another exploration similar to that, which is called the Cambodian Youth Outdoor Leadership Program. Our mission statement is to empower Cambodian youth to be outdoor leaders and environmental stewards by introducing them to natural spaces, raising awareness of conservation threats, and nurturing the passion and skills needed to positively impact their communities.

So, we divided into four sections in the program which are Leadership, Nature Appreciation, Wilderness, and Medical and Risk Management. I was in the Nature team. We were focusing on how to make the participants changed their thought on nature. We had several fun activities for them to enjoy while learning at the same time.

After having the activities and the workshop planned out. We had time to practice the workshop with students at our school, the Liger Leadership Academy. Then, we had our workshop with the students from Kampuchea Action to Promote Education (KAPE), as well as with Happy Chandara School. It went pretty well, and I think it was a great experience sharing what we do and went through the workshop smoothly. The students were really engaged and enjoyed our workshop as they had a lot of fun, and get new outdoor, and leadership skills and understanding more about nature and our program.

Group Photo with Happy Chandara students after the workshop

Leading in a workshop is not only what we do, but we also need to get more skills in leading participants on outdoor trips. We went on a trip to the highest mountain in Cambodia, Aural, Kampong Speu. It was one of the hardest climbs but; the best view comes from the hardest climb, right? Not just enjoying the hiking, and views of nature, we learned many skills, specifically about being a leader on the trip. Our facilitators shared the experience, we practice managing parts of the trip and leading the group hiking. It was really enjoyed doing that and gain more skills in leadership, as I got good feedback from my facilitators as well.

Hiking at Aural Mountain

That was everything from the round. Planning/outlining the workshop, implementing it, giving workshops, and practice leading a trip! We had more exciting stuff we did, if you want to know more, stay tuned and part II will be posted soon! Thanks for reading!

Electricity in Cambodia

Imagine living without electricity in the 20th century. Most people will think without lights, fans, air conditioners, life is nothing without it. Well, there are still many people in Cambodia, especially in rural areas that still do not have access to electricity. When I entered an exploration called “Electricity in Cambodia: Economy, Energy & Access,” I learned more about how people live with and without energy, current electricity status in Cambodia, and how people use electricity.

I didn’t know where all the energy I use every day comes from before joining this exploration? I wondered why we got blackouts, particularly last year during March & April? Is there enough electricity we produce? From which country do we import electricity? What are different ways of making electricity for people living off-grid? I was wondering so much, but I gained more understanding and knowledge at the end of the discovery than I expected.

Cambodia is one of the world’s fastest developing countries, including electricity, which is an important development section. And for me, learning and understanding about this is very important. Talking about electricity in-class study is useful, but what has helped more is going out to various places to meet experts and people who have experienced electricity-related.

We have had an exciting opportunity to meet a person from EnergyLab, a company working in Cambodia to create clean energy. I’ve learned a lot about Cambodia’s electricity lab and a lot of information as well. He led us to see the ISPP solar farm, and the first time I realized that the solar system helped the school so closely related to electricity, it was surprising to me.

We had another chance to visit an off-grid village in the province of Kampong Speu. While being an off-grid village, people living there are using solar energy from a company called OkraSolar. OkraSolar is a company providing off-grid people with solar energy. We’ve been to meet some solar-using villagers and guess what? Solar power is very helpful and they feel like it; solar power makes life easier and better.

We also had the opportunity to meet the BlueCircle, a company that provides wind power to countries in Southeast Asia in particular. We have no wind power yet in Cambodia, but the company plans to have it on Bokor Mountain, Kampot Province. They’re still learning about the wind speed, the climate, and the environment in general, but their goal is to start building it as soon as possible. It would be a very useful source of electricity for Cambodia because it is one of the most efficient electricity sources.

Since I learned a lot from this exploration and how important electricity is to the world, I started thinking more and using it wisely because it is not so easy to produce. But as the production of electricity is increasing, I believe there will be fewer blackouts as time goes by, and we will have enough electricity to power the country.

Here’s the link to the final exploration video. Enjoy!

Cambodia Electricity News Exploration (Liger Leadership Academy)

Outdoor Leadership!

Outdoor Leadership is an exploration that we learn about the out world, living in outdoor with technology, technical outdoor skills, risk management, wilderness first aid, etc. If you want to know more, please read until the end!

The first week of this exploration, we focus on Nature. We defined what nature means to us and we did a sit-and-spot activity to observe nature and thought what nature means to me.

Another outdoor skill we learned was Navigation. It was about the understanding of the map, how to read the compass, and also to know the direction by using an analog watch and the sun, the star, landmarks, and natural vegetation! The activity that I did relate to that was that I drew a map of my school campus, including legends, direction, symbols, etc. Then, we need to write the instruction of where I want my friend to go. It was a fun activity and we also learned at the same time!

Then, we started to talk about the good ways to pack your stuff for outdoor trips. We learned about needs vs wants, group gear, and personal gear, the right way to pack your backpack, etc. After that, we prepared to go on our first trip!

On the 7th of March, we went to Kirirom national park. We needed to walk on the long trail to the heaven cliff. We got to see the view from the heaven cliff, we saw many birds especially hornbills, we had dinner around the campfire, collected many pinecones, saw many different plants, got to see the sunrise, we did the sit and spot, we sang together, we played some fun games, and observed a lot of natural stuff. We hiked 18km for both days. We had really great collaboration, respect, risk-taking, stewardship, and we learned a lot in outdoor and we had fun times together!

When we came back, we did a group reflection and shared something we learned! Then, we learned more new lessons about risk. It was about risk management, assessing risk, and actual vs. perceived risk.

Another important lesson I learned was about wilderness first aid. We learned about the Patient Assessment System, Primary Patient, etc. Then, we did an activity. We divided into team and we had different roles (patient, lead rescuer, assistance rescuer). The patient pretended to be injured in a different situation and both rescuers had to help the patient by using the wilderness first aid rules. I learned so many things and I think that it’s very import to know whenever you go outdoors.

And then, we’re going on a trip again! We went on a 3-night journey to Mondulkiri and the experience was supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! During the trip, there were many inquisitive bird watchers who would grab hold of the binoculars whenever they saw birds, passing their sight. Being surrounded by the wilderness allows us to discover more about nature in this magnificent country. Ultimately, they’ve been showing different leadership roles throughout this jaunt.

“The more you go out, the more thing you’ll find and learn!”

Indigenous Community in Cambodia

Indigenous are minority groups that live in different places around the world. In Cambodia, there are up to 10 or 20 indigenous groups. In this article, you will get to know the wonderful exploration that I had working so hard in the past seven weeks, the project is called “Indigenous Community in Cambodia”. Before, there was a senior group that had an exploration of “Pnong” which is an indigenous group in Cambodia. My team and I were the second group in the junior cohort that got to learn and research about this project. The first junior team was research most of the groups and there were two indigenous groups left for my second team. They are “Kui” and “Stieng”. There were two final products that we wanted to see are books about Kui and videos about Stieng.

I was chosen to be one of the members of the Stieng video team. In the first couple of weeks, I planned the scenes that I will shoot for the video, the questions that I would ask, etc. Well, I finished those early so I decided to help my friends out and also do more research. Besides doing a video about Stieng, I also needed to write an article about Kui so that I can learn about both minorities. Both the video and book, we have different themes such as food, geography, education, language, daily life, economic, culture, belief, and ceremonies. My theme was about Food. To make the information clearer, we needed to go on a trip to interview the indigenous people.

The first province we visited was Kroches. In Kroches, next to the Cambodia-Vietnam border, Stieng indigenous group live there. It was in Krong village, Snoul commune, Snoul, district, Kroches province. We arrived there at 7 o’clock at night. We had some chat with the people there before taking shower and sleep. It was a really good night. In the next morning, we started to interview and taking videos. My theme was about food so it was very nice because they cooked one of their traditional food for us. Click on the link below (end of the article)  to watch the video I made. We also visited a school near the community to do some workshop and to interview some students, teachers, and the principle. The workshop was about drawing and frisbee, which they never know it before.

The second province we went to was Preah Vihear. Kui people live in Bankern Phol village, Rom Tom commune, Roveang district, Preah Vihear province. We arrived there at night, right at dinner time. They cooked very delicious foods for us, absolutely fantastic. Once we woke up, we did some interview with the villagers to get more information, helping my friends with interviewing and took some photos to put in the book. After that, a group of young people came to perform their traditional dances. Click on the link to watch the video that my teammate made about the dances ( After the performance, we had a chance to ride a tractor (picture below) to the spiritual forest. That forest is located in a protecting area so there are still many trees and plants.

We also visited an organization based in Phnom Penh called Cambodia Indigenous Peoples Organization (C.I.P.O). We got to know each other very well and they were really proud of our project. We also got to interview some people over there to get more information because they are indigenous people that came from different minorities.

That’s it for the trip! When we arrived at our school, we started to put things together. I was editing the Stieng video while everyone else working on different projects.

A few weeks after that, we went on a trip again to Preah Vihear to show them the first version of our products, and also to verify the information with them and to get some pictures or more information that we needed.

If you would like to see the videos that we made, click on the link below and I hope you enjoy it.

Stieng’s Food

Stieng’s Language

Stieng’s Geography

Stieng’s Economy

Kui’s Ceremony

Kui’s Art & Dances


P’rong (Stieng’s Food)
Sharing students near the Stieng’s community about Frisbee.
Grandpa ‘Soun Yan’ (Stieng)
He was cooking P’rong (Stieng’s food).
A Kui woman who cooked delicious food for us.
Kui’s food
Kui’s food
Kui’s people that came to watch our presentation and clarify the information.

That’s it for the post, hope you like it. Thank you so much for visiting and reading my portfolio.

Precious Plastic – Exploration Round 2

What comes into your mind when you hear the word “Plastic”? Yes, it’s convenient and has a lot of benefits yet it causes so many problems. One of the biggest problems is its waste. But Why?

Nowadays, the world’s population is growing more and more and we need more space for living and if more plastics are being used and wasted, it will take up more space and we won’t have any places to live. Also, it also destroys our green Earth. So, why don’t we do something to not let plastic take over our beautiful planet? One of the best and easiest way is to recycle or upcycle or use it again. That’s what my classmates and I were doing in the exploration called “Precious Plastic”.

On the day of the first week, we watched a documentary about plastics that are being thrown away everywhere in the ocean. Then I tried visiting some websites about plastic (precious plastic, plastic bank, plastic ocean, etc). After that, I was researched and found out all seven types of plastic and their recycling codes and those are Polyethylene Terephthalate, High-Density Polyethylene, Polyvinyl Chloride, Low-Density Polyethylene, Polypropylene, Polystyrene and other.

Then, I watched some videos about how plastics are made. After that, we got an idea of recycling plastic machine from an open source website called Precious Plastic. We went through some websites and brainstorm about products that we could make after we recycle. Then, we divided into teams to see how to make those recycle precious plastic machines and there were four of them; shredder, extrusion, injection and compression machine. After that, we found an organization in Siem Reap called Naga Earth where they also have one of the machines and we set a plan to visit them.

So, we went to Siem Reap to visit Naga Earth. Friendly people at Naga Earth toured us around their campus. I saw many interesting things. I saw biofuels that are recycled, their own soap, silk screening, recycling paper and two of the four plastic machines. Pictures below shows what my teammates and I did at Naga Earth.

Learned about biofuel!
Group photo! 😉
My friend was trying to make the paper!
We got introduced to silk screening!
He taught us how to make recycling paper!
We were trying the soap!
Naga Earth!

We asked them about the machines but after that, we decided to not make the machine. The reasons were because it’s very hard and dangerous to make (we’re too young), also, we are not experts. We had another idea to buy it but it was too expensive. So, we thought that; Ok, we don’t have those machines so we can upcycle and recycle those plastics.

The next day of the trip, we went to another organization called “ Rehash Trash” for a workshop. The workshop was about recycling plastic bags into items. We made different beautiful products such as baskets, coasters, bags, bracelets, etc. Pictures below shows what my teammates and I did at Rehash Trash.

My friend was making products from plastic bags!
Products at Rehash Trash!

When we got back to our school, we led a workshop to our students about what we did during the trip. The workshop was about making recycling paper and recycling plastic bags into items.

My friend was making the paper during the workshop!
My friends were making things from plastic bags!
Paper that they made during the workshop!

The exploration was ended very very well, and now, I knew how to recycle things and not to use many plastics. Thanks for reading and visiting my portfolio. Have a nice day!

No Single Use Plastic at Liger

Plastic is now becoming the most popular thing that people use for packing food, to drink or eat something, and it becomes their habits. It’s almost impossible to eliminate plastics but I’m sure that we can stop single-use plastic. In this exploration, we wanted to start our campaign from small to big, which means that stating it from my school, Liger, then to the community, then Cambodia. Etc.

Since the start of our exploration. We divided into teams and brainstorm ideas on how to convince people to stop using plastic. Then, we went around the campus and interviewed students and staffs so that we could know what types of plastic do they use every day. We also organized the school, trash house to make it easier to put trash in. After that, we went around the campus and counting trash and the result was super unbelievable. We got thousands of plastic within one week in the school! That huge! That was just our school, what about the country, and the planet. Imagine how many are those plastics? Then, we started to think that we should start from something smaller, so we started to stop single-use straw first. We gave out bamboo and metal straws to students & staffs to see what do they think about it compared to plastic straws. We went to a cafeteria company shop in AEON 2 mall called BetterU and the reason why we went there was that they are brought grass straw to Cambodia and we thought it was very interesting. We also made a Facebook Page called No Plastic Cambodia and I hope you love it and don’t forget to leave a like. There we came to our last week of the first exploration! We went on our second trip to AEON mall to meet a person named Sandy who is from a non-government organization called Only One Planet. Her NGO is working on a project to stop single-use plastic and she made some cool biodegradable products that could replace plastic. And we got back to our school, we shared about the ideas to our school director. We’ve got so many more ideas and we went to ask our chef, Matt for price comparison between plastic to biodegradable. Then, we launched our campaign on the school assembly. On that same day, we were sharing and presenting about our exploration to many people on the school sharation (presentation) day. Thank you ever so much for reading and visiting my portfolio. Have a fantastic day!