Friday, July 11, 2008

Giant Garage Sale for the ‘Muskoka School Project’ in Cambodia

Calling on all Muskokans to clean out their closets and garages and contribute their good used junk towards the building of a Six-Room Ministry of Education Certified Cement Public School in Cambodia - 'The Muskoka School Project'.Phone Lisa McCoy for pick-up of your donations: 687-8538, or email . Volunteers needed too!

The sale will be held Saturday, August 16th across from Bethune House, Gravenhurst - don't miss the great bargains!

100% of the money raised will go towards this school-building project. Over 305 children in an impoverished rural village in Northern Cambodia will benefit from this new school.

This project is supported by the Canadian Founded CLMMRF (Cambodian Land Mine Museum Relief Fund) in collaboration with 'The Trailblazer Foundation' . Construction to begin January 2009.

>‘Making Dreams Real’ for the children of Cambodia.

Muskoka School Project Report July 1, 2008
By Lisa McCoy, Community Outreach Coordinator - CLMMRF

Six- room Ministry of Education certified cement school in the village of Ta Trav in Svay Chek Commune, Angkor Thom District, 20km N. of Siem Reap along the Pouk District border. This is one of the poorest districts in Cambodia.

There is an existing 4-room wood school on the school property in need of repair. A 6-room cement structure will be built to accommodate the existing 305 students. More students from the surrounding villages will be able to enroll upon completion.

The “Muskoka School’ project is supported by the Canadian founded CLMMRF (Cambodian Land Mine Museum Relief Fund) . All donations (cheques) towards this project are made to ‘CLMMRF’, and mailed to CLMMRF Outreach Project Coordinator, Lisa McCoy, Box 53, Gravenhurst, ON, Canada, P1P 1T5.
Registered non-profit organization ‘on the ground’ in Cambodia securing necessary provincial paperwork and implementing the actual building project is ‘The Trailblazer Foundation’ . The CLMMRF and The Trailblazer Foundation have collaborated in School-building projects. Their goal is to build a school a year through this collaboration.

Estimated cost is US$55,678.14. There has been one private donation of $20,000, leaving a balance of US$35,678.14. Lisa McCoy will be fundraising towards a goal of $20,000, or more. The CLMMRF will contribute the remaining $10-$15,000. Since the bulk of the funding will come from Muskoka, a sign will be placed on the school designating it the “Muskoka School Project”, noting the citizens of Gravenhurst and the Muskoka Rotary Clubs. In Cambodia the school will be legally registered as the ‘Ta Trav’ School, as all public schools in Cambodia are named after the village in which they are located.

A formal estimate from ‘The Trailblazer Foundation’ detailing project costs will be acquired shortly. To date US$4000 has been raised. A Giant Garage Sale on August 17th should bring in $1,500 to $2,000. A Gala Evening in Muskoka is planned for November, with Richard Fitoussi, International Project Manager of the CLMMRF & International Documentary Filmmaker in attendance, should raise upwards of $5,000. It is hoped that contributions through presentations that Lisa McCoy makes in Muskoka, will raise the balance.

Information from the Trailblazer Foundation follows the photo-documentation of the site.

Ground breaking will occur January 2009 when water levels are low.


Please make your cheque payable to 'CLMMRF', and mail to:

Lisa McCoy,
CLMMRF Community Outreach Project Coordinator
Box 53
Gravenhurst, ON
P1P 1T5

Background Information from the Trailblazer Foundation:
Trailblazer has implemented water projects in Angkor Thom made possible with an International Matching Grant through Rotary District 5440 with the cooperation of the Pursat, Cambodia Rotary club as cooperating/host club.

We build the schools according to an annual assessment made by the District, which prioritize needs and location. We are in the process of adding an additional Field Director who will concentrate on water projects, as this will facilitate the expanding school needs. Desks and tables are included in the contractor’s quotation and provided. The school uniforms and lunch programs are organized by assisting the village to establish a committee system to manage them and are funded with a micro-loan program which helps the community to pay into a a village fund to help fund projects as proposed by the villagers themselves. This system is working very well for Trailblazer Foundation and has a 3-year history of sustainable successes.

Typically there is an integrated District meeting which is held in November to identify and prioritize needs in the District as identified by village chiefs and Commune leaders. I met with the District Chief But Kary in April and he identified a need in the village of Ta Trav as an immediate concern and asked us for help. I made a verbal aggreement with them, funds permitting of course. It is to be a 6-room school, 305 students with Govt teachers and all of the proper MOU's and support provided through the Siem Reap Provincial offices. I have an estimate of the construction at 55,678.14.

The property is currently administered by the Ministry of Ed, with Govt teachers staffing a dilapidated wood school with a couple of outdoor temporary shelters to handle the overflow. This village is within our management area approx 25 Km north and east of Siem Reap along the Pouk District border.

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