On a recent trip to assess new projects in Cambodia I paid a visit to the National Borei for Children. It is a government-run home for children with disabilities. The first thing that struck me was how nice the facility was. It is not what you'd expect in a developing economy. It is clean, spacious, and fairly well staffed (there can never be enough staffing for kids with disabilities, but they do their best). I met some Danish physical therapy students who were volunteering there. They were very happy with the hands-on experience they were getting.
When I got back to the U.S. I Googled the center because I'd forgotten a few details. I discovered a few blog posts by volunteers from a large (let it remain unnamed) for-profit organization that sends thousands of volunteers abroad each year. It was interesting to read their impressions - quite positive. This organization/company charges just over $3000 for one month for this as well as their other programs in Cambodia. Airfare is not included. Wow. ELI charges $585 for the same program. They have a few minor add-ons, but there is really no way to justify this. Marketing is expensive though, and they are masters of it.
Not many projects that we work with have as much online documentation as the National Borei for Children. We've written it up on our site and on our PDF brochure for Cambodia, but Google will serve you well. Here's a Youtube that a quick search turned up. We work with some other very interesting organizations in Cambodia. And Phnom Penh should be high on any traveler's list of destinations. I put together a photojournal of my recent trip here. PHOTOJOURNAL
By Kevin O'Neill