“We believe that the changes we want to see in the world are only possible if we invest time in people” PEPY Tours
Available Dates: Spring Break, Summer holidays, other dates available.
Length of Placement: 2 weeks or longer
Overview of Project:
Cambodia is a fascinating country. From its stunning ruins of Angkor to its devastating history with Pol Pot, and on to the current optimism for the future, there really are few countries that compare. There is an amazing energy in Cambodia where people are full of hope and plans. We are thrilled to add this country to Stratosphere’s offering.
Stratosphere has partnered with PEPY Tours to provide a unique opportunity to learn about what good community development means, while exploring Cambodia’s history. PEPY Tours’ responsible tourism policies aim to support local economic development and sustainable development organizations, minimize negative environmental effects, and create responsible volunteer experiences that educate and inspire trip participants and contribute to community goals.
Stratosphere loves to partner with an existing local organization. And we couldn’t find a better fit than PEPY Tours. They have been running tours for 8 years now with students from around North America and Asia. To read more about their philosophy go to their website. Some of their interests include: sensitive travel, supporting good community development, and turning learning experiences into leadership opportunities.
Students will do a homestay on an island in the Mekong River. This is a wonderful opportunity to learn firsthand the way that rural Cambodians live – pumping their own water, bucket showering with traditional Cambodian sarongs, sleeping under mosquito nets and being woken by roosters bright and early!
The focus of this community program is self sufficiency. You will work with the community based organization, Cambodia Rural Development Team (CRDT) for 5 days on their programs which are all focused around applicable rural technologies: bio digesters, enhanced fish ponds, frog farming, rain water harvesting, etc.
CRDT is a voluntary student-organized initiative founded in 2001 with the aim to raise living standards in rural Cambodia and contribute to environmental conservation. The team has high technical expertise in environmentally appropriate agriculture development, increasing food security, supporting market linkages and income generation, natural resource management, non-timber forest products, water and sanitation, renewable energy technologies, eco-tourism and community empowerment.
When visiting one of CRDT’s main areas of work on a picturesque Mekong island of Koh Pdao, you will learn about and witness CRDT’s environmental community projects first hand. Where possible,you lend a hand with construction and maintenance projects of innovative solutions like bio-digesters or with seasonal agricultural initiatives.
An optional 1 day volunteer experience at a Cambodian conservation project is also available. Check out Angkor Centre for Conservation of Biodiversity to learn more.
- Siem Reap for the famous Angkor temples
- hiking in mountains nearby Siem Reap
- Mekong River handicrafts project (also a community development initiative)
- local arts program (also a community development initiative)*
- S21 (Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum) and the Killing Fields
- dinner at a social enterprise (supporting the education and development of students who were once living on the street)
- boat trip to visit the remaining fresh water dolphins
*Cambodian Living Arts (CLA), a program of the Marion Institute, aims to support the revival of traditional Khmer performing arts and to inspire contemporary artistic expression. CLA supports arts education, mentorship, networking opportunities, education, career development, and income generating projects for master performing artists who survived the Khmer Rouge as well as the next generation of student artists.CLA’s four core programs—teaching, performing, recording, and new commissions—support 15 master musicians and nearly 300 students and assistant teachers to develop skills and relationships that will enable them to generate income and develop as leaders, while also helping to preserve and celebrate their heritage. You will watch a traditional dance performance and even get a dance lesson from the local students in the techniques dating to the times of the great Khmer Empire.
Level of Commitment: Stratosphere encourages a long term commitment in order to facilitate resource development. However, we recognize that situations change therefore this is not a requirement to participate in the program.
Subject Match: Social Studies, Geography, PE, Math, Science, Business
Download the information sheet here.
For a detailed itinerary and more information please click here.
Check out the PEPY VIMEO video here.
Check out the Stratosphere VIMEO slideshow for Cambodia here.
For more photos check out our album on Facebook here.