January to June 2016 in Don Bosco Hatrans


Kep City — We are at the beginning of July and it is already half of 2016. A good time to remember all the events that are doing our project this year. Since October 2015, when we started the new academic year, we oversaw difficulties and new challenges seen on a more global context of financial crisis, reduction of humanitarian aid and the need to rethink the dimension of the Don Bosco Technical School and Children Fund in this part of the Kingdom of Cambodia. Fortunately, we have received the support of the Salesian Congregation and many benefactors and friends that understand the importance of our educative center inside the building of a better society not only for the country but also for the world. In all these present situations of the world like economical crisis, corrupt systems not only in Cambodia but everywhere, the humanitarian crisis of refugees fleeing war-torn areas into rich countries, the upcoming of waves of racism, ultra-nationalism, fundamentalism, anti-humanism and many other ideologies that divide humanity, we believe that this project is something but a drop of water in the immense ocean, but it is important anyway, because it challenges all those situations.

Our Don Bosco Hatrans in Kep keeps going in being a sign of peace and unity: when in other places some groups use religion as a flag to go against others, we have teachers and students belonging to different religions that see Don Bosco as a Father, Teacher and Friend of the poor. When many are getting a lot of money for themselves, taking it from what is supposed to be in the benefit of the Nation, we are at the side of the poorest, giving to them hope and education as a tool to build a better country. Supporting a project like Don Bosco in Kep Province is to support these ideals. We are eternally grateful to those benefactors who have been always at our side since 2011, believing in this project, in these children and youth, especially those who have been loyal to their words and friendship, those who are over institutions, rules and fears, but know our urgent needs and come to our encounter. Thanks always and welcome to our Project, welcome to Kep Province, welcome to Don Bosco.

We are a drop of water into the Ocean, but we will keep making our humble contribution because we love the future, the children and youth of this country.

We are a drop of water into the Ocean, but we will keep making our humble contribution because we love the future, the children and youth of this country.

January

1: The educative and pastoral community of Don Bosco Kep started the New Year at the Don Bosco Kep beach with a cultural program including music, dancing, meal and the celebration at midnight.

3: Mr. Wolfgang Bauernfeind and Mrs. Uti Hennecke Bauernfeind from Senior Experten Service (SES) from Berlin arrived to Don Bosco for their volunteer experience. Wolfgang was to give a radio journalism course and Uti to assist the hospitality section program.

4: The first meeting of the Don Bosco Kep Academic Council made by the managers, head master, accountant, Children Fund, Kindergarten and the rector to discuss decisions on the daily running of the school.

6: The head master, Mr. Pov Tula, presents the proposal of the Human Resources Manual to be discussed. Every managers gets a copy to give comments on it.

SES Uti Hennecke Bauernfeind during the first month of 2016 assisting the Hospitality Section. Here with her former students and now Kindergarten teachers Vahita and Haffy.

SES Uti Hennecke Bauernfeind during the first month of 2016 assisting the Hospitality Section. Here with her former students and now Kindergarten teachers Vahita and Haffy.

8: Mr. Wolfgang goes to Sihanoukville to help in a short version of his radio journalism course in the social communication section.

11: Fr. Samnang, Mr. Pov Tula and Mr. Bun Ponlork attended the workshop for the Planning of the Cambodian Delegation in Phnom Penh, led by Filipino Fr. Mario Begli.

18: Academic Council Meeting No. 2. There was also a meeting with all teachers in the afternoon.

19: Miss Antonella Grasso from Uruguay, came to help as a volunteer at Don Bosco Kep Children Fund. She came directly from Mozambique, Africa, where she was for three months doing also a volunteer. She spends one month more in Don Bosco Sihanoukville, before joining Kep.

24: The Bessuco Boys from Don Bosco Phnom Penh came to Kep for one night. The Mass was dedicated to Saint Francis of Sales. Fr. Samnang celebrated his 18th anniversary of his First Profession as Salesian of Don Bosco. He talked about his Salesian life with the residents during the Good Night.

25: Academic Council Meeting No. 3.

26: There was a meeting with teachers and representatives of the students to talk about our Mission and Vision as Don Bosco Kep. There was also a meeting with the teachers of the Kindergarten.

27: The Rector Major, Fr. Angel Fernandez, erected Don Bosco Kep as a canonical community under the Don Bosco Sihanoukville community.

28: In order to facilitate the Don Bosco Kep community running, the Local Salesian Council (made of Fr. Eugene Xalxo, Br.Roberto Panetto and Fr. Albeiro Rodas – Samnang) decided to reduce the number of technical sections to 5 (social communication, information technology, office administration, hospitality and electricity) that would reduce also the number of staff and keep the number of students in 200. Fr. Samnang met the managers to initiate a due process that would respect opinions and would conduct to a final process. Second year students should finish within their due sections, but students of first year of the other sections, will be integrated and students of culinary first year would be sent to Don Bosco Sihanoukville.

29: Celebration of the Solemnity of Saint John Bosco, color games and dinner.

February

1: We celebrate the Mass intention for Blessed Luis Variara, the Salesian apostle of the lepers in Colombia. As we want to open space also to youth and children with special physical abilities, we ask Blessed Luis Variara to support our work.

Today Ponlork and Tula evaluated the quotation updating of constructors for the American Schools and Hospitals Abroad (ASHA) supported by USAID through Salesian Mission. This project was presented in 2014, but many requests have delayed its implementation.

2: Academic Council Meeting No. 8.

8: We call this the Integration Day, where we established five technical sections in Don Bosco Kep: social communication, information technology, office administration, hospitality and electricity. There was a Mass and sport programs. Fr. Eugene, Br. Roberto and Br. Michael came to the program from Sihanoukville. The atmosphere was joyful, so the process was well coordinated by all teachers, managers and students. The students of culinary went to Sihanoukville with Br. Roberto. It was a very touching moment, because all those students cried at the moment they left the school, but we were sure we will giving our boys and girls to the same hands of Don Bosco but in Sihanoukville. This will be always their home.

During our 2016 reformation of the Technical School, we transferred the group of culinary to Don Bosco Sihanoukville. Here the whole group with Fr. Samnang and Br. Roberto.

During our 2016 reformation of the Technical School, we transferred the group of culinary to Don Bosco Sihanoukville. Here the whole group with Fr. Samnang and Br. Roberto.

10: Today we celebrated the rite of the Wednesday Ashes. In the night there was a path of light to the chapel where we spent time in meditation.

11: Miss Antonella Grasso comes to Don Bosco Kep to join the Don Bosco Kep Children Fund team with Ponlork, Juan Camilo Giraldo and Lyheng.

15: The expect visit of Ms. Margret Mojtej, Asian coordinator for SES in Bonn, Germany, was cancelled because Ms. Mojtej got a small accident in her way to the airport. She was okay, but she had to be immobilized, so all her travel to Asia was suspended. We were already preparing a welcoming program.

Mr. Wolfgang went to the Phnom Penh Royal University to give a conference to students.

16: The Cambodian Delegation Salesian Council met Mr. Karl from Caritas Sweden, who is very much interested in support our educative projects of Don Bosco in Cambodia. He visited some schools, including Don Bosco Kep and it inspired his appreciation for our mission.

17: We decided to move the kindergarten to the Banteay Srei Female Residence, since it has 4 new rooms that can be used as classrooms and facilities for it. It does not alter the running of the residence, since students come after 16:30, when the kids are leaving.

20: Sister Michel from Good Sheppard sisters of Sihanoukville working with women and children, came to Kep with 3 lay leaders, all of them Don Bosco secretarial past pupils and gave a conference to resident students about child protection and sexual formation.

22: We started to review our inventory.

23: The Kep Province Department of Traffic Law Enforcement visited Don Bosco Kep to give a conference on traffic rules to students and teachers.

24: Ms. Silvia Cordoba, an independent journalist from Colombia, arrives to Don Bosco Kep to be a volunteer at the social communication section. She has been director of a TV channel, radio journalist, and writer and TV professor in the University.

28: The Rector Major of the Salesians of Don Bosco, Fr. Angel Fernandez, arrives to Cambodia to do his visit with his personal secretary, Fr. Gustavo. Fr. Klement Vaclav, EAO Regional, arrived first to join the team. The Don Bosco Kep social communication section was the in charge to follow the visit with video and photography. The team was made by Fr. Samnang, Ms. Maria Victoria Lopez, Ms. Silvia Cordoba and Mr. Sen Ra.

29: The social communication team, with the exception of Silvia, went with the Rector Major to Siem Reap.

March

2: Cambodian Salesian Delegation Assembly with the Rector Major and the Provincial Council coming from Bangkok with Fr. Paul. The Rector Major encouraged the mission, the preference for the poor and the organization of the Delegation as a very effective system, including the protection of properties and the empowerment of the present projects. He advises that every setting must have at least 3 Salesians. It is particularly interesting for Don Bosco Kep, where Fr. Samnang has been alone since 2011. We expect that other Salesians will be sent to Kep soon to help in the pastoral and educative development of Kep.

In the afternoon the Rector Major said good bye to Sihanoukville and went to Phnom Penh passing by Don Bosco Kep. He arrived in Kep at about 16:00, where all the educative community was waiting for him, including children, a representative of the Kep authorities, Fr. Gianluca Tavola, PIME, Kampot-Kep Parish priest, the sisters and many others. The Rector Major was very happy to see so much joy. He let his hand-prints near the Don Bosco Birthday House monument and sow a tree.

3: Academic Council Meeting.

The top 2016's moment at Don Bosco Hatrans took just two hours with the visit of Fr. Angel Fernandez, the Rector Major of the Salesians in his visit to Cambodia.

The top 2016’s moment at Don Bosco Hatrans took just two hours with the visit of Fr. Angel Fernandez, the Rector Major of the Salesians in his visit to Cambodia.

7: Wolfgan and Uti from SES ended their service and traveled to Vietnam for tourism, then back home in Germany. They promised to return for the New Year 2017 to continue their valuable service. They also let some funds to support scholarships of technical students.

9: In this day there was a total solar eclipse covering Indonesia, Malaysia and some parts of Southeast Asia, including Cambodia. In Cambodia it was seen as partial solar eclipse. In the aim to give more cultural background to the students, we explained about the natural phenomenon and organized a view activity using the welding glasses equipment – as recommended by NASA. The eclipse in Cambodia started at 6:38, being at its maximum level at 7:32. We could do some photos and the students enjoyed it, for many, the first time they saw the moon passing in front to the sun.

11: A group of Don Bosco Kep past pupils, many working in Phnom Penh and, mostly in TV channels, came to Kep to play football against the teachers.

14: A group of ACTS Singapore invited some of us for dinner at Villa Romanea, led by Mr. Chan. They are supporting the development of the kindergarten of Bishop Olivier in Phnom Voar.

17: Some members of the community participated in the funerals of the brother of teacher Asmath and teacher Vahita. His brother was the leader of the Muslim community in Kep Province. He was very good friend of Don Bosco and we accompanied them in their sorrow. Teacher Asmath became his successor, but he keeps being teacher at the social communication section.

20: Fr. Samnang moved the Holy Week one week before in Kep in order to avoid absenteeism due to the Khmer New Year. There was a spiritual celebration of the Palm Sunday in the chapel.

21: We put two sewing machines with the sister who attends the Catholic community of Prey Pros. It will serve some ladies of the region and they can do works for Don Bosco.

22: Senior students started their semester finale exam.

23: Mr. Som Panith, former manager of art section, was named manager of hospitality section.

24: In the evening there was the Mass of the Last Supper and lavatory of the feet.

25: Fr. Samnang traveled to Thailand by bus to attend the Salesian Provincial Chapter in Hua Hin.

April

6: There was a whole day dedicated to clean the school, put things in order, repair, etc. It was also a day for sharing together by sections and some sports. The kindergarten did its own program.

8: Today was the THANSGIVING DAY with the coming of parents and tutors of the students.

9: Holidays for Khmer New Year started.

18: Academic Council meeting.

Mr. Gerard van Hal and his wife came to visit Kep and invited all teachers to take dinner at Samonea Resort.

Gerard van Hal and his wife Patty Pattranith Chamamporn, visited Don Bosco in April 2016. They are benefactors of the educative project, donating many things for the best of children, youth and staff. Here with Fr. Samnang and students of the office administration section.

Gerard van Hal and his wife Patty Pattranith Chamamporn, visited Don Bosco in April 2016. They are benefactors of the educative project, donating many things for the best of children, youth and staff. Here with Fr. Samnang and students of the office administration section.

Mr. Andres Ruiz, a Colombian filmmaker, arrives to Don Bosco to lead a course on filming with the students of social communication.

19: Fr. Gianluca Tavola, PIME, Kampot-Kep Parish priest, went to Italy for his vacations until July 20. He asked Fr. Samnang to help in the Mass with Fr. John.

21: Ms Maria Victoria Lopez ends her service as TV journalist volunteer. She has been in Don Bosco for one whole year. Also Ms. Antonella Grasso and Juan Camilo Giraldo are leaving.

Fr. Samnang visited the Catholic Takeo Eye Hospital, because he is finding difficult to read in the evenings. They said his eyes were okay, but only needed a reading glasses.

26: Mr. Karl Goeppert and Nicole Stolz from Caritas Sweden visited Don Bosco Kep and discussed with Fr. Samnang possibilities for help. Fr. Samnang suggested that the technical schools could have solar plants, as well as to support the growing of mangroves at the school sea coast as a contribution to ecology.

27: Second meeting of the Cambodian Delegation planning with Fr. Mario in Phnom Penh. Tula, Ponlork and Fr. Samnang representing Kep.

30: Fr. Mario visited Don Bosco Kep.

May

2: Academic Council Meeting.

5: The Kep Province Department of Police came to Don Bosco Kep to give a conference on civic formation. They praised the good behavior of the Don Bosco Kep and said that they were a model for the Kep community.

9: Academic Council Meeting.

12: TV5 Channel visited the social communication section and made interviews for training.

17: Academic Council Meeting.

19: Celebration of the Solemnity of Mary Helps of Youth at Don Bosco Kep. Sport, games and the Women’s Day with a gift to the best female students and all female teachers.

Farewell of Colombian TV journalist Silvia Cordoba by her pupils of the social communication section.

Farewell of Colombian TV journalist Silvia Cordoba by her pupils of the social communication section.

24: Academic Council Meeting.

26: Farewell for Ms Silvia Cordoba, ending her volunteer service.

28: Meeting with representatives of Chip Mong Insee Cement Corporation. It is a new cement company to be installed in Banteay Meas District, Kampot Province, and 30 kilometers to the north of Kep. The idea is that Don Bosco could train a group of students to become their future staff. They should support the program and provide the guidelines for the formation that would be for 3 years, students with 12th grade, living near the company. After the meeting, some Don Bosco teachers from Kep, Sihanoukville and Phnom Penh studied the curriculum.

June

2: Academic Council Meeting.

7: A Dutch family, Mr. Niels van Wijk, who adopted many years ago a boy, visited Don Bosco Kep to see the brother of their adopted sun, Ross Hun, who is studying first year of electricity. The boy grew in the ASPECA orphanage of Kompung Thom. They wanted to support Hun.

9: The RHAC NGO of Kampot, specialized in hygienic and sexual formation, visited Don Bosco Kep and led a workshop on sexuality, prevention and hygienic to all students.

In this day Mr. Puty from Phnom Penh, Sambor from Sihanoukville and Tula and Seyha from Kep met in Phnom Penh to build the curriculum proposal for Chip Mong Insee Cement Corporation.

10: Mr. Anila and Mr. Noy from Indochine Garment Factory of Kandal, visisted Don Bosco Kep to give a workshop on searching for work. Mr. Anila interviewed also students.

15: Fr. Samnang and teacher Seyha met with Fr. Roel and representatives of Chip Mong Insee Cement Corporation to agree in the curriculum proposal. They liked it, but they want to see more hours of the students in the company. They need also three teachers, one being in the company under Don Bosco rule.

The Don Bosco Association of Past Pupils donated 3.5 tons of rice to the Don Bosco Technical School of Kep, as well to other technical schools in Cambodia.

The Don Bosco Association of Past Pupils donated 3.5 tons of rice to the Don Bosco Technical School of Kep, as well to other technical schools in Cambodia.

20: The Cambodian Salesian Delegation council met in Phnom Penh. They discussed about the proposal of Tani Perspectives for Children, located at Tani Commune, Angkor Chey District, Kampot Province, to give it to Don Bosco Cambodia, provided that all children will be under Don Bosco. Mr. Johannes, one of the leaders of TPC, came with Mr. Reinhard, affiliated to an Austrian NGO near to Don Bosco. They concluded that the process will start. Fr. Roel will present the proposal to the Provincial Council and to the Rector Major for their approval. Br. Roberto will follow the situations of land and property and he proposed to buy more land to guarantee a big agriculture program and Fr. Samnang will follow the situation of children and the administration.

21: Johannes from TPC and Mr. Reinhard, visit Don Bosco Kep and discussed more points with Fr. Samnang.

22: Fr. Eugene, Br. Roberto, Fr. Samnang, Ponlork and Mr. Seyha visit TPC with Johannes, Henglay and Reinhard  and discussed the point of properties and possible buying of more land. Johannes asked that Don Bosco present a project. They don’t like the idea to move the children far from Tani, as some suggested as far as Poipet. Fr. Samnang ensured that this is a process and children will not be moved as objects. In Don Bosco Kep there are also place and children with families can be support by Children Fund, but we have two years to follow.

23: Teacher Try Seyha led a seminar on electricity with all students of his section.

27: Sister Alejandrina Ahumada, Chilean Dominican sister in Sihanoukville, came for a week to Kep to teach children handicraft.

30: Ms Liza Cruz, leader of the Filipino association of Don Bosco lay volunteers, visit Don Bosco Kep with Mayte, volunteer at Don Bosco Phnom Penh.

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