Stung Treng Women’s Development Centre (SWDC) has two children’s education aspects. A school sponsorship education program and they also run a nursery for children aged 3-6.
The pre-school and kindergarten programme is aimed at children between the ages of 3 and 6. The aim is to provide children with the foundation that they need to be successful in life as well as raising the economic wellbeing of the region in the future. According to UNICEF, less that 26% of Cambodian children between the ages of 3-5 have educational opportunities and parents can often not afford both the direct and indirect costs of sending their children to school. SWDC aims to change this.
The kindergarten started off aiming at the children of employees of SWDC, but because of it’s huge success, can now offer an education to the children situated within the town of Stung Treng. So far it has been operational for 13 years and has seen 864 children ‘graduate’.
The Kindergarten is offered free of charge, with breakfast and snack meals offered throughout the day to increase the protein levels in the children’s diets. Toys and books are available to all children, meaning parents are not struck with any indirect costs of education. Children who attend the Kindergarten are then filtered into the school sponsorship programme. In addition to the free education, children are taught about nutrition and cleanliness, and any health concerns can be diagnosed and treated on site.