- A small country in Southeast Asia, area 181,035 km2, population approximately 15 million.
- One of the poorest countries in Asia.
- Ravaged by decades of civil war.
- A quarter of the population was wiped out in the 1970s as a result of the policies of an extreme communist regime.
- Origin of the term killing fields, where innocent men, women and children were beaten to death.
Many countries went through tragic upheavals in the latter part of the 20th century, but the story of Cambodia must rank among the most harrowing:
- A country with no inhabited towns, no personal possessions, no money, no schools, no health care, no religion, no trust, no hope.
- A country where enemies of "the organisation" were betrayed and exterminated, where parents witnessed their babies being battered to death, where the condemned had to dig their own graves.
- A country where at least 1.7 million people died in four years as a result of starvation, disease and execution.
Today, the world has largely forgotten Cambodia's traumatic past. Yet the country still suffers:
- A quarter of the people live on less than US$1.25 a day and a quarter are undernourished.
- Half the children leave school before they reach the age of 15 and many have to work.
- Violent crime is commonplace.
The concept of community was lost during Cambodia's tragic upheaval in the 1970s and the effects are still felt today:
- Betrayal, often by friends or relatives and even by children, has left many unable to trust.
- Former, highly held values, such as the responsibility of grown-up children to care for elderly parents, have been slow to be recovered.
- Religious beliefs were repressed, believers persecuted or executed, and places of worship destroyed or desecrated by a brutal communist regime.
- Poverty and the desperate need to survive have fuelled corruption.
- The gap between rich and poor is widening rapidly.
Out of Crisis...
Crisis: an unstable situation of extreme danger or difficulty.
Cambodia's recovery from the effects of war, genocide and the virtual elimination of its skilled workforce has been slow and beset by setbacks:
- For more than a decade Cambodia was refused development assistance by western governments.
- Nearly 20 years of insurgence soaked up scarce resources and hindered recovery.
- Inconclusive election results, political instability and an under-resourced civil service have held back development.
- The rural poor have suffered as a result of floods, drought and deforestation.
- Cambodia is not expected to be clear of landmines until at least 2020.
Cambodian Communities out of Crisis
Cambodian Communities out of Crisis (CCC) was born out of one man's compassion for the people of Cambodia. We are a Christian organisation, working in partnership with the growing Christian church in Cambodia, but aiming to provide humanitarian assistance to people of all religions in that country. A major focus of our work is education, providing sponsorship for children and adults to attend good-quality schools and colleges in Cambodia. CCC's vision is for the establishment of a Christian college in Cambodia. We also enable children from poor families to go to school and receive a daily meal.
CCC is a member of Global Connections.
If you need any further information about Cambodia or about the work of CCC, please contact us by telephone, email or letter.
How you can help
CCC relies on donations to finance its work. We have no salaried employees and all our activities are carried out by volunteers. As a result, our overheads are low and as much as possible of the money we are given is sent to Cambodia, where it is most needed.
If you would like to help the people of Cambodia through CCC, please go to our Giving page and choose the way of making a donation that suits you best. If you are a UK taxpayer, please consider making a gift by Gift Aid or another tax-efficient method. Tax recovered on gifts made by Gift Aid helps cover our administrative costs.
For other ideas on how you could help CCC, please go to our Get Involved page.
If you belong to a church, home group or club in the UK, and you think that other members would like to hear about Cambodia and CCC, please contact us to arrange a visit and audio-visual presentation.
Thank you for your partnership in our work!
Where to go next
Try these links: