Kandieng Sustainable School

The Cambodian school system briefly and concisely explained:

The school in Cambodia is basically free of charge for the children.

However, Cambodia is an extremely poor country and the teachers are paid poorly and sometimes not at all for a long time. As a result, the performance and motivation of the teachers is of course also poor. Many hours are cancelled and the children hardly have a chance to pass the exams without paying for additional tuition and thus have the option of continuing (paid) higher education. The result is that the children of the poorest families have no chance of escaping the vicious circle of (educational) poverty. The State School teachers give private paid lessons in the afternoon – often the only way for the children to learn the material not taught in the regular school in the mornings and for the teachers, unfortunately, usually the only way to secure their livelihood.

Back to the planned project we started together with Sustainable Cambodia and the Stateschool Kandieng. The provincial government of Pursat allowed us to use the old school buildings on the grounds of the huge State School for our own purposes. We cannot take care of such a long-term project alone, which should give 80 children of poor families a real chance for education and future. Therefore, we are dependent on the cooperation with Sustainable Cambodia.

After some meetings with the responsible people and a visit of the localities we decided to start the project of “our” own school and to provide the financial means for the teachers for the first year. Our condition was that SC supervises the project and select the children. The parents of the children were obliged to renovate the classrooms and put them in a good condition. We chose three teachers for the subjects English, Khmer and Mathematics.

The costs for the whole year 2011 are $ 3.124,-. The renovation of the school was carried out by the parents of the students.

Date: January / February 2011

Thanks to the generous donation of the world’s largest law firm “Cliffort Chance”, which amounted to an impressive € 10,000.00 from € 5,000.00 donated by the staff and € 5,000.00 donated by the law firm, we were able to bring an unbelievable amount of help to unbelievably poor people under the motto “We make the school bigger and better”. Furthermore, we were able to help the families of the five poorest students in an emergency project and even two orphans.

5 families, 2 orphans and 200 students thank Clifford Chance!

In addition to this, the 10 students living furthest away were given a bicycle to use. This reduces the daily time to school from about 3 hours on foot to about 1 hour by bike.

The school in Kandieng was opened last year for 80 pupils by us, but it is actually 92. Their development and the acceptance was so enormous that we equipped them with a new wall painting, a library, two computers, a water supply, hygiene stations, four bio-sand filters, etc …. and extended them to 200 (!) pupils during our help trip 2012 in the project “better & bigger”. We connected the whole thing with a school festival and invited 50 vitamin B guests to the 92 pupils to date. Every child got new notebooks, pens and books, even a toothbrush with toothpaste and some other things.

Mr. Phalla and the team around our partner organisation Sustainable Cambodia (SC) have already done a great job on site in May and implemented most of the things to enlarge/improve.


Measures Costs in $
Painting of the school

School utensils / toothbrushes, etc. each of the 96 students has received such a bundle

School extension from 96 to approx. 200 pupils, teachers for one year, etc.

School library

Sanitation and hygiene project at school

Support of the families of the five poorest pupils, construction of a hut,
Garden for self-sufficiency, organic sand filter (drinking water), etc.

additional support of the affected five families by us on site,
8 x school uniform ($ 18,-) + 8 x shoes/shirt/jeans ($ 20,-) etc. + 10 x bicycle 
(50,-) + 8 x medical emergency fund ($ 15,-)

School party for the implementation “better & bigger”, distribution of school utensils,
official introduction by the main dignitaries in the province, etc..









This project and the learning success is invaluable for the whole region and for the chances of these children. It not only gives a perspective to the children, but also to all the families associated with them and to around 1,000 very very poor people whose children would otherwise have little access to urgently needed education.

Akun Schraan” is what we are supposed to tell the donations, the most honest and highest form of gratitude that these people send you.

…. this gratitude is what we are hanging on to, because not even we have seen so many happy faces in one day. Akun Shiraan Clifford Chance & Staff !

Date: January 2012

Sponsorship between the Kandieng Sustainable School and the Hansa Gymnasium Köln

For years the Hansa Gymnasium has not only supported the Kleinen Hilfsaktion e.V., but has also given much more motivation, devotion and hope to about 270 students of the Kandieng Sustainable School. The initiator of the sponsorship is Emma Externbrink, the daughter of our long-time friend and supporter Rolf Externbrink. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts and sincerely hope that this sponsorship will last for a long time!

How this wonderful school sponsorship came about

“In our search for a donation target for the proceeds of the school festival, we came across the Kleine Hilfsaktion which supports the Kandieng Sustainable School in Cambodia with its income. We invited the founder of the organization Roland Debschütz and talked to him about our donation goal and a school partnership…” read more!

Which projects have already been implemented

“The atmosphere on Monday, 23 January at 4 p.m. when the SV handed over its donations to the “Kleine Hilfsaktion is good. Maybe it’s the delicious biscuits, but it’s much more, the first big step that we as UNESCO-SV are taking.

Half of the proceeds from the school festival were attributed to the SV. She has decided to donate the money to Cambodia to support a school in the WASH project (water, sanitary facilities, hygienic hand washing stations)…” read more!

January 2019

During our routine visit of our Kandieng Sustainable School in Kandieng we repeatedly became aware of the plastic problems on the whole area. The head of the school wants an incinerator, with which we do not agree for the time being. First, the awareness must be sharpened in plastic waste avoidance and waste separation. For this purpose, we have called a meeting with all directors on the premises. In order to be best prepared for this appointment, we visited the first plastic-free school in Pursat and immediately had a conversation with the director. Questions like: What causes the most plastic waste? How is the concept implemented? Which hurdles were / are there? … we were able to clarify in advance.

We went to our meeting with all this information, the contact of the director of the plastic-free school for advice and support, as well as with plastic alternatives. The reactions are promising. Already at the end of January 2019 an internal meeting will take place where a concept with the focus on “creating an environmentally friendly learning location” will be developed.

Creation of an environmentally friendly learning location (Plastic Free School)

The ecological awareness of many people in Cambodia is poorly developed. Furthermore, environmental pollution and waste of resources are extremely visible. The consumption and handling, as well as the disposal of plastic urgently needs a change. Due to a lack of qualifications and inappropriate experience learning, many Cambodians are far from environmentally conscious. Above all, plastic is a permanent problem because it is not biodegradable, people use it in abundance and do not dispose of it in an environmentally friendly way. Consumption and above all disposal cause health risks and massive environmental pollution. In Cambodia, there is no mature disposal system, hardly any waste separation or alternatives. These facts, combined with ignorance, lead to garbage lying around and being burned all over the school grounds. The existing shops on the school grounds, which sell snacks and drinks to the pupils during breaks, contribute massively to the plastic consumption of the schools. Every drink, every snack is sold in a plastic cup. Thus, the plastic gets into the classrooms and can be found everywhere on the school grounds.

The aim of the project is to develop eco-efficient and resource-oriented solution strategies and alternative courses of action together with the directors of the schools. A school is particularly suitable for this, since children learn above all through experience and role models. An environmentally friendly learning location and orientation towards concrete life situations can have a lasting influence on the awareness of children and their environment.

The costs for the conversion to a “plastic-free school” can neither be estimated nor precisely determined at this stage. As described above, school principals and teachers are encouraged to develop and implement a concept. The planned project period (planning and implementation) is one year. The Kleine Hilfsaktion e.V. is there to provide advice and support. Costs incurred, such as reusable products, are financed by the Kleine Hilfsaktion e.V. if no donor is found.

Due to a wonderful initiative of the high school at Neandertal we are able to significantly defuse the hygiene situation of the primary school with a hand washing station and two toilets for a total of $ 2.223,- and at the high school with three rainwater containers for a total of $ 1.081,-. The school management around director Mr. Gruttmann and co-director Mrs. Gorgel have come up with something very special for the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the school. A sponsor run that not only “makes” this great help possible, but also finances another much more extensive project. Both projects support school and kindergarten children, who hopefully will be able to break out of the vicious circle of educational poverty.

We pay tribute to this school, the students, the school management and all sponsors.

The total costs (incl. teachers’ salaries, activities, school materials, etc.) of our school for the year 2019 amount to $ 15.785,- for the year 2019. The detailed budget can be found here.

Date: 09.01.2019

Project coordinates:12.588160, 103.953802


Status: Continuously searching for sponsors!
Budget: 15.000 €
Sponsor: Kleine Hilfsaktion e.V., Clifford Chance, Hansa Gymnasium KölnGymnasium am Neandertal