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Growing up in Cambodia: Chhay Hean aged 13

Growing up in Cambodia
© UNICEF Cambodia/2012/Mengyean Ung

As told to Mengyean Ung

Kampong Thom, Cambodia, August 2012 - I am Chhay Hean. I am 13 years old and I live in Kampong Thom province with my family. My father is a manual labourer and my mother makes a living digging for potatoes at a nearby farm. In the family, I am the youngest. I have two older brothers and one sister. They are students in secondary school and high school.

I attend Kumro Srok Baray primary school, and I am now in grade six. I like to play football with my friends when we are free and when we have no class. I really love my school because it has fresh air and a good environment. Besides this, the teachers in my school are very nice and helpful. My favourite subject is mathematics because it is the one subject that I can learn easily and get good grades. In class, I do not have many friends because I do not have much time for friendship. Moreover, I do not like to talk much and sometimes I feel shy when talking to others.

When I have free time I have to help my mother dig for potatoes and with housework but I also like reading books and playing games with my brothers and sister.

Even though my family is not rich, I love them and I like my life. I really appreciate everything that they give me and especially the support they provide to help me to study. My school is about 100 metres away from my home, so every day I get there by walking. It is not the same for some other children; their parents take them to school by motorbike or they have their own bikes to travel to school.

I would like to be a good teacher when I grow up because I want to help other children and the next generation in my village. I notice that some children live in poor families or bad conditions but they deserve to have an education as much as anyone else. I hope my wish can come true.

 

 
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