With sports come the qualities like sportsmanship, focus! Values like team work, discipline! Skills like strategizing, coordination and that's exactly what Globalteers new sports program in Cambodia is all about. Now a noob like me would think sports in Cambodia is probably just like in every other country. But that's far from true, especially in the rural areas of the country!  

It was my first time visiting Globalteers Helping Hands school located in the Pastar Char Village of Cambodia about 25km away from Siem Reap, where I could see the buzzing vibe of the city disappear into absolute calmness, solitude and fresh air! 

Cambodia Sports Project

I was awestruck at the sight of the kids studying under the shade of the trees and was even more overwhelmed after talking to them. Along with child education, sports is another prime program at the school. The school has recruited three local coaches in the village with a goal of creating efficient coaches, thus spreading the work across schools in different villages. So far there are 9 other government schools that have been on boarded in the program, teaching sports to more than 2500 kids. 

But these are just the facts!!! 

Globalteer started the new sports program in Cambodia in their school Helping Hands, to familiarize the kids with different types of sports while focusing on the importance of physical education in the game. The efforts put behind the program were quiet intriguing, but what really blew my mind was its impact on the lives of the people in this small community.

How you ask? 

I got an opportunity to chat with the senior sports coach Kong Lak, and their new coaches who were recently on boarded. We discussed their routine and the benefits of the program in their personal lives!

Here you go... 

Sports Coaches
sports in Cambodia

Meet our sports coaches!!! 

How did you come across Globalteers sports program? 

Kong Lak: My previous job was that of housekeeping in Angkor Children hospital which is about an hour ride away from the village. I worked there for almost 6 years and was looking for an opportunity closer to home. When I saw the job vacancy on Facebook, I didn't wait any longer and applied for it! 

What motivated you to apply for the job?  

Two main reasons, 

1) Angkor Hospital is far away in the city and spending several hours in the commute was not only exhausting but expensive. Working for Globalteer meant being closer to home in the village and being able to go home for lunch. 

2) I love sports! The only sport we've played since childhood is Volley ball. This program gave me an opportunity to learn football which immediately became my favorite. With an added bonus of getting my hands dirty playing basket ball! 

Sports in Cambodia is growing and people are getting better at it. However, rural areas often go neglected due to lack of resources. This was my time to give back to the community! 

What all sports do people in the village normally play? 

Volley ball is a popular sport in the village! 

Villagers are more acquainted with volley ball than football as the latter demands more people for a match. Where as volley ball works with less people as per the games technique. We usually play with other villages for whom football is more advanced and the fields are not groomed enough, hence volley ball! 

What other sports do you teach in the school? 

The focus is majorly on football for now! However, basket ball and volley ball are also a part of the program. We are super stoked about the football festival being held in February and March that we've been preparing for! 

Which is your favorite sport? 

Volley ball as I've been playing it since childhood. But Football is now my second favorite! 

How do you find the sports program helpful for your self and the children? 

It has been very helpful in terms of developing new skills like controlling the ball, passing, dribbling and mastering different tactics. The kids will definitely benefit from it when they go for real matches in the field. Fifty percent of our focus goes on physical education, which covers topics like how important it is to have a good physical posture and maintaining it. So it has been a learning experience for me! 

It has also helped me in developing good communication skills with the kids, learning to being patient with them and making sure they benefit from the course while also having some fun! 

How difficult was it to learn football through the sports program? 

It was more of an adventure than it being difficult! Mr Lucas our previous sports program manager, helped us big time. I love the challenge of learning something new and teaching it to others simultaneously! 

How difficult is it to teach the kids and other coaches to play? 

We try to make it effortless by pre-planning the lessons. We have planned approximately three months of the program with a schedule already. This helps us in being consistent and making sure kids and coaches get the most out of it. 

What are your plans with the sports program as the senior coach? 

For now our focus is to train kids with the basics. We are also planning Sports festival where kids could participate and put their skills to test! February next year is when Globalteer is hosting a sports festival where people from different school will be participating in different tournaments. We are also in the process of training more coaches so they can train others! 

And there goes the bell for a lunch break! All the kids and staff disperse to enjoy a scrumptious meal with their family! 

It only takes a small desire to make a difference! If you are looking to contribute or be a part of this skillfully designed sports program in Cambodia, browse through Globalteer's Sports Program opportunities and help these coaches and kids strengthen their skills. 


manali

Manali is a Digital Marketing intern at Globalteer. Originally from India and living in Ireland, she is out here venturing on her sabbatical leave. With a degree in Electronics and telecommunication, she realized her true passion is marketing. She is working on Globalteer sports programme and other grass-root projects.

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