Basic Education





Graduation in
Kampong Chhnang
5 March 2009


The Basic Education Project of the Deaf Development Programme is a two-year program for young deaf people who are 16 years of age or older and have never been to school before. DDP teaches them sign language, literacy, simple mathematics, and basic life skills.  These are pictures from the graduations in Phnom Penh, Kampong Chhnang, and Kampot for students who finished their studies in December, 2008.

Phnom Penh  |  Kampong Chhnang  | Kampot

In Kampong Chhnang, but before we arrived at the restaurant where we had the graduation, we stopped at the house of this young deaf woman (green top) who graduated from our education project earlier.  She seemed to be a logical candidate for our job training program but so far had refused to participate. Today our education officer (blue shirt) and two other young deaf women from Kampong Chhnang who are now in job training spoke to her again about training for herself. I think the two other deaf friends persuaded her, and finally she said she would attend. Talking with a deaf girl and her family
This young woman's parents are both elderly and we had real concern for her future without some job skills to support herself.  Her mother sits in this family "store" in front of their home on a small dirt rural road, selling shampoo, soap, noodles, and other small items to generate some income for the family. Shop of deaf girl's family
At the restaurant eight of the ten December graduates gathered for the presentation of certificates.  Deth Bunthok, the Education Project Officer, welcomed them and the few family members who came while Som Vichet did sign language interpreting. Beginning the graduation ceremony
Charlie Dittmeier, the DDP director, also congratulated the students and thanked the families for their support, and then he gave out certificates to each of the graduates recognizing their two years of work in DDP. Presenting a graduation certificate
Finally it was time to eat a meal together, probably the first time the students had been all together since they finished school last December--and maybe the last time they will all be together again. Charlie sat with them, conversing with the students in sign language better than he could with their parents in spoken Khmer! Charlie eating lunch with deaf graduates
Map showing Kampong Chhnang Province

Kampong Chhnang town is 90 kilometers (55 miles) from Phnom Penh.
The trip takes about two hours by taxi.

Go to Projects page on DDP website
Go to Charlie Dittmeier's home page