My name is Sokvi Non; I was born in 1987(I am 32). My parents and all of my siblings live in Sdukbrovoek Village, Sdukbrovoek Commune, Moung Russey District, Battambang Province, Cambodia. There are eight people in my family, and I have six siblings (three sisters and three brothers). I am the second child. My father is a farmer, and my mother is a housewife. My oldest brother decided to drop out when he was 14 because he wanted to help my family. He was just in grade 2, and we were so poor at the time that we did not have enough rice to eat sometimes. My brother loved feeding cows very much. So my parents decided to ask for neighbors’ cows to feed. One of the neighbors provided us with two cows, which made my brother, Sovan, very delighted. He got married when he was 21, and he has four children now. One of my sisters had decided to drop out when she was in grade 5. Her name is Channy, she was my first younger sister, and I found that she was very smart, for she always was first or second in the class among forty-five students. Unfortunately, she had made up her mind to drop out because she wanted to work in Thailand to help earn money to support our family. My younger brother also dropped out when he was in grade 4. My two youngest sisters decided to drop out when they were studying in the Secondary School (8th grade), because they wanted to work in Thailand to help earn money as well. My parents and I could not stop them because they thought that “The more they learned, the more money they spent”; unfortunately, my parents were not able to support them. Now most of them are working in Thailand, they are all married.
I had left my own family to live with my aunt, my mother's sister when I was in grade 2. I was just 14 at the time. My aunt was married to a well-educated man, so her family’s living conditions were better than mine. I had to take care of my aunt’s cows; I also worked as a farmer. Fortunately, my aunt was very kind and friendly, and she always encouraged me to study. Although I could study, my knowledge did not improve much due to the lack of schooling; I lived in a rural area. I wanted to study English; unfortunately, I could not because I was not able to find an English school in my village and I could not move to study in the city because I was super busy herding the cows. I wished to learn more English, and I always hoped that I could go to study in the city one day because I became so happy when I saw my uncle speaking English with foreigners. I graduated from university because of my kind aunt and uncle. I am luckier than all my siblings because I was able to finish college. I studied at a university in Battambang Province and graduated in 2014. I have had experience teaching English for almost seven years up to the present. Before I joined TASSEL, I had worked for private schools. I found that privileged children did not need me because they had enough money to find good schools, so I decided not to work for a private school anymore. After that, I had made up my mind to work with TASSEL. I applied for a job in TASSEL and passed my interview to work for it. After I had worked with TASSEL for two months, I got married on 22nd February 2019. I have been working with TASSEL for almost a year now.
The reason why I decided to work with TASSEL is that it is an organization that has been working to help poor children and families throughout rural areas without discrimination. I have found that TASSEL has been working to provide the high quality of English programs to the children in the rural areas which need English education. Besides teaching English, TASSEL has also offered rice and some medicines to impoverished families. All of the TASSEL staff have been working very hard for the poor; also, TASSEL staff have been helping sick people by sending them to hospitals. While they are teaching the children in class, they need to put their work aside when they know that there are sick people who need to be sent to the hospital. TASSEL has been working as a family; all staff from the topmost to the lowest levels have been working together like siblings. We love each other very much, for we have the same willingness. For me, I have had my purpose that I wanted to help develop my community since I was young. I think that I will use my existing knowledge that I have learned from school to share with others, especially the poor. My purpose is that if I had a lot of money, I would build a school to help teach English to the poor without charging money from them. As in my own experience, I had no English schooling until I started attempting to study in high school. So my English knowledge was very poor when I started university. Now, I feel so happy that I can work with TASSEL to provide the English knowledge to the poor. The next generation will not get worse like mine did because they can improve their knowledge by studying with TASSEL. They can get English classes not only with Khmer Teachers but also with foreign teachers, for TASSEL has a lot of kind foreigners helping to teach the children. So, I dare to say that the TASSEL is the best organization for developing or changing Cambodia by creating the best education system for Cambodian children. TASSEL has not only been providing real knowledge to the children but also provided hope to them. I love TASSEL.