VISIONS: Cambodia High School Service Program

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Accepting Applications for 2019!

Programs are filled on a first-come, first served basis so we encourage you to apply early!

About

Engage with Cambodia’s fascinating culture, challenging history and charming people from your homebase in Battambang. Attend a circus with thrilling acrobatics, learn to cook Cambodian food, explore the countryside on a bamboo train and be totally awestruck at Angkor Wat, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Contribute to the region’s promising future by improving primary schools and empowering kids.

Highlights
  • Community Service
  • Angkor Wat
  • Cambodian Culture and History

Questions & Answers

Reviews

93%
based on 4 reviews
  • Growth 9
  • Support 7.8
  • Fun 8
  • Housing 8.3
  • Safety 9.5
Showing 1 - 4 of 4
Default avatar
Shanlu
8/10

A Trip of Finding Self

It was a good start, for my VISIONS trip, for my southeast Asia travel and my community service experience.
With an excellent leader who was brought up in Cambodia, an inornate pure Cambodia was revealed upon our faces. We appreciated the significance of Angkor Wat, but also had a taste of the sad Khmer Rouge history; we experienced the refreshing countryside view on the bamboo train, but also the smelly landfill where nobody was willing to go. No matter it was good or bad, impressive or obnoxious, we felt a full, vivid Cambodia through our own eyes.
Besides, I am really proud to share that we built a brick wall within only a month from scratch. Labor was hard and tiring, not to mention that we were working under the scorching Khmer sun, but as we saw the smiling face of schoolkids around us, all pain was healed. They would give us a helping hand during their break time, or pick flowers for us sweaty nasty workers, despite the existence of language boundary. They lit up our summer and our community service experience.
I had few experiences of community service, the only activity I did was to send living supplements to needy countryside families. However, through this trip, I truly understood the meaning of community service. Maybe it is about teaching adolescents how to help others, whereas no matter it is donating a couple of money or building as a brick wall, it won't do much to the community, it can't change the way locals live or the future that they'll have. It is more about finding yourself in the community. Find your value, find your connection, find out how much you're needed, and find out why you're needed. Find what you can do and what you can't. Find your character and your mission.
It was my beginning, but it could never be the end. I am still on the way to my journey, and what about yours?

How can this program be improved?
More freedom during free time( e.g., larger boundary), more time to rest and escape from the intensive schedule. Leaders need to think more about the participants' perspective.
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
jacob
9/10

Cambodia

My summer in Cambodia was actually my 4th visions program and I can easily say it was one of the best. I loved living in an actual city and I have never been to that part of the world so I was thrilled to learn all about their unique cultural activities. My favorite parts of the city were the public gym equipment and all the free dance, yoga, etc. classes that take place at night around the park.

The community service was incredibly rewarding because we literally built the latrines from the ground up. From digging the trenches to pouring the concrete foundation or even laying tile for the bathroom floor, we did it all. But the best was working at the school and along side the children. Each day the children would come and watch us work. But they would also eagerly try to learn english and western games. Even simple games like head shoulders knees and toes got them jumping with joy. To this day I still remember all of my favorite little kids' names.

And I can't forget the travel aspect. Through Visions I have now seen 2 wonders of the world and I would not have asked for a better way to experience them than with the close friendships I had made already over the trip. Each excursion brought me closer to the culture and really connected me directly to the roots of the Khmer people. No touristy attractions and dumbed down info. We got the hardcore truth about all of Cambodia's history. It was great rolling around the city in our tuk tuks, talking with the locals, and waving to all the excited children seeing Americans.

How can this program be improved?
The head of the program wasn't the greatest and this lead to bad planning of excursion trips and mistreatment of other staff and teens.
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
EC
10/10

Amazing experience

I was a participant in the Visions Cambodia program 2014. I really loved it. I chose this program because I was really attracted by South East Asia, and I was not disappointed whatsoever. The service we did we very meaningful, the participants and staff were all great people. The service was mostly construction work (masonry and carpentry) and teaching at a summer camp run by SALT Academy (an organization that helps empower Cambodian girls/ women through sports). I had never used a saw or hammer before and by the end of the program I was quite adept. The service was well planned and organized and we got so much done we did extra work for HelpAge, an organization helping the elderly. We also did many fun things such as kayak and bike on the week-ends. We got to visit Angkor Wat, the Tonle Sap Lake, Phnom Penh (the capital of Cambodia) and Siem Reap. I fully recommend this program !

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Sierra
10/10

Cambodian Summer

VISIONS is a fun, easy way to enjoy your summer while impacting the world around you. This summer I attended the Cambodian program and am so glad I did. It was truly amazing to be incorporated into the Cambodian lifestyle and culture. The people are happy, generous, and greedy for knowledge. While teaching summer school classes in our hometown Battambang, I discovered first hand just how smart and willing to learn the children are. Working projects may be scary at first but do not worry if you have never cemented a building or painted in your life. By the end of the program you will be ready to build yourself a house! Participants, staff, and community members are always willing to teach you how to perform different jobs at the work site. Soon enough working becomes fun and you forget about the sweat and sun. VISIONS allowed me to meet people from all across the globe which is something I will always cherish. This summer I meant something, and I challenge you to mean something too!

Yes, I recommend this program

About VISIONS Service Adventures

VISIONS programs are grounded in a philosophy that has been changing the lives of teenagers for 30 years. We believe it is best to do one thing and do it well. That’s why across all programs we have one model, built on the pillars of meaningful...