Phnom Penh, Cambodia – In recognition of their high impact work with children, families and communities, The Stars Foundation announced on 9th December 2015 that two civil society organisations in Cambodia, This Life Cambodia and APLE Cambodia, have been awarded a Stars Impact Award in 2015.
The award represents a high standard in programming for underserved children. Previously taking open submissions, The Stars Foundation this year invited the strongest organisations in the region to apply following a nomination by established local partners.
The award includes $50,000 USD plus capacity building support, and was presented during the annual Philanthropreneurship Forum held this year at the Palais des Congrès de Versailles, Paris, on Saturday 12th December 2015.
This Life Cambodia was recognised for ongoing commitment to putting community priorities at the forefront of development. By listening to, engaging with and advocating alongside communities, This Life Cambodia empowers individuals, families and communities to tackle complex social justice issues including: juvenile justice and the impact on families of the legal justice system, domestic violence, and access to education. In 2014-2015 This Life Cambodia directly reached 1428 children and 3033 adults through direct programming, and a further 12572 children and 5433 adults indirectly.
APLE Cambodia, which was founded in Phnom Penh in 2003, was also recognized for tireless efforts to support victims of sexual abuse. APLE Cambodia provides investigative assistance to the police to track down child sex offenders and rescue victims. In addition, APLE Cambodia offers pro-bono legal aid and social support. Since its foundation, APLE has rescued 746 victims of sexual abuse, trained 10,698 individuals in how to handle such challenging and sensitive cases, and contributed to 220 successful convictions of offenders.
Stars Foundation Program Officer for the Asia Region, Katie Williams said of the two organisations:
”We are delighted to be recognising and rewarding This Life Cambodia's achievements to date, working alongside children and their communities in Cambodia. Throughout the Impact Award selection process, Stars Foundation was impressed by TLC’s commitment to community led and evidence based interventions, and its strong focus on developing robust internal systems to support its work. We look forward to working with the TLC team over the next couple of years at what looks to be an exciting period of growth for the organisation”.
“I am delighted to inform you that APLE Cambodia has been selected as a 2015 Stars Impact Award winner. Strong relationships and trust between APLE and its key stakeholders were evident during the visit and there appeared to be some good plans in place for APLE’s future direction.”
This Life Cambodia Executive Director, Billy Gorter, said:
“It is an absolute honor to be recognized as a high impact and well-managed organisation by the Stars Foundation. This Life Cambodia works on the basis that local communities are the experts when it comes to identifying practical ways to achieve improvements in their lives. Conversations with communities inspired the creation of This Life Cambodia and the award funding will ultimately allow us to continue to ensure that communities are at the forefront of identifying their own development needs. We celebrate this win with all those who have actively participated and supported us through the evolution of This Life Cambodia over the years”.
Mr Samleang Seila, APLE Cambodia’s Executive Director, said after receiving the award that “We’re proud and privileged to bring APLE up to the standard for winning this award and being globally regconised. This greatly signifies our priceless contribution to the safety of Cambodian children. However, we can’t celebrate our success here and say it’s finished. The war against child sexual exploitation is still a long way to fight.”
In total, Stars Foundation received Expressions of Interest from 115 organisations. Twenty-four Award winners were chosen across three regions. Between them, the 2015 Stars Impact Award recipients reached more than 674,000 people last year.
ABOUT THIS LIFE CAMBODIA
This Life Cambodia is a not for profit, non-government, civil society organization that has been operating since 2007 from a head office in Siem Reap. With a mission of listening to, engaging with and advocating alongside communities as they define and act on their own solutions, This Life Cambodia empowers individuals, families and communities to respond to complex social justice issues including access to education, domestic violence, juvenile justice and the impact for families with a parent in conflict with the law. This Life Cambodia was formed in response to this need for capacity building and training for disadvantaged communities in Cambodia to actively engage in the development process and to define their own solutions to social justice issues.
This Life Cambodia currently implements four programs, with the following goals:
- Lower Secondary School Development Program: for communities to be involved in school development so that access to and quality of education in Cambodia is improved.
- This Life Beyond Bars: for children and communities affected by the legal justice system in Cambodia to have their rights promoted and addressed.
- This Life Without Violence: to empower communities to take action that prevents and responds to domestic violence.
- Community Research and Consultancy Program: for responses to development issues in Cambodia to be best practice and community driven.
The Stars Impact Award win positions This Life Cambodia as a leader in community development and the organisation is also Governance and Professional Practice Certified in Cambodia, making it one of less than 70 organisations that aligns with accepted good practice standards in the Cambodian civil society sector. 95% of This Life Cambodia’s staff are Cambodian.
ABOUT ACTION POUR LES ENFANTS (APLE) CAMBODIA
APLE Cambodia is a non-governmental organization [NGO] responding to the continuing need to combat the sexual abuse and exploitation of children in Cambodia. Based in Phnom Penh, APLE was established in 2003 and now has a regional presence in Sihanoukville, Siem Reap and Battambang. APLE Cambodia is the only NGO specializing in investigating street-based child sexual abuse and exploitation in Cambodia, making the organisation invaluable experts in this field.
APLE Cambodia has a highly trained and dedicated staff including lawyers, social workers, investigators and project managers. APLE Cambodia’s vision is freedom from sexual abuse and exploitation for all children and its mission is to reduce all forms of child sexual abuse and exploitation through prevention, protection, promotion of prosecution, and advocacy. APLE Cambodia works to achieve this mission through four interconnected programmes: the Investigation Program, Legal Support Program, Social Support Program and the Awareness and Training Program. For further information in regards to APLE Cambodia, please visit: www.aplecambodia.org; www.facebook.com/aple.cambodia