Dream Classes


Dreams are very important to us at PEPY Empowering Youth. Many of the students we work with are only exposed to a small range of possible futures. We believe it’s important for young people to dream big and see how they can make their dreams a reality. Through our Dream Classes, we aim to nurture those big ambitions for their future and give them the resources and connections to take the necessary steps to realizing that future.


In the PEPY Empowering Youth Dream Classes, young people are provided a forum to identify and discuss their ambitions for the future, and any challenges they may need to overcome. The classes provide career resources, mentorship, and group workshops. Successful Cambodian professionals present to our students giving them exposure to different ideas and aspirations.


Dream Classes are available to Kralanh High School students in grades 10, 11, and 12 and in 2017 we extended the project to 28 January High School which is located in Srei Snam too. The expansion is possible because we have a full support from Child’s Dream Organization.


 2017: We are very excited to share with you all that this year, we extend our dream class to 28 January High School. Dream Management Project this year is under full support from Child’s Dream Organization. Total number of students registered for Dream Classes is 443 students, 129 of them are from 28 January High School.

We have already held our first Sharing Event of the year. More than 250 students the event in each school. We found that there is more involvement from the school principals and teachers in our project which make us very happy. Their participation is an opportunity for the students to showcase themselves of all the hard that they have put into in order to be successful in life.

 2016: The number of the participants in Dream Class has noticeably increased than last year with the total of 271 students. They study more than 20 topics were provided during this academic year.

More than 450 students, teachers and representatives from different institutions were participated in the Skills Fair. This year is special, the Sharing Event happened twice and approximately 250 students participated in each event.

The average attendance or this year 75 percent. More than 14 inspiring speakers were invited to share with different Dream classes which we usually call Dream Talk.

We have improved our relationship with the school, particularly with the school principal and we all have a good collaboration with local authorities.

2015: Over 171 students registered to Dream Project. The number of students decreased if compare to previous year. The reduction was due to the fact that the government has change policy in national exam for 12 graders. The students were scared and spent more time taking private classes with their government teachers. Those continued to study with PEPY actually can better manage their time and balance themselves in and out of government schedule. However, by the end of the year we have 266 students attended the classes as they get better with time management.

The Skills Fair this year was attended by more than 350 students and teachers take their tour around 16 stores where NGOs, schools and companies display their work, opportunities and services they provide. More than 250 students attended the Sharing Event.

Our former scholarship student, Skut Savoeng, started his career as Dream Project Officer. His knowledge, skills and commitment to run Dream Project full time allow the students to learn about his potential and inspire to pursue for higher education.

Approximately 80 students who have high attendance which is equal or above 70 percent  and a few teachers were invited to join study tour to Siem Reap province.

2014: Over four hundred students registered for Dream Classes. This represented a significant increase from 2013.The principal provided us with an office, allowing us to offer counseling for students.

We held our second Skills Fair in Kralanh, with over 500 students in attendance.

Fifty-eight Dream Class students from Grade 11 and 12 went on a field trip around Siem Reap. They visited Ecole Paul Dubrule, a tourism/hospitality training facility, as well as government-funded Provincial Training Center (PTC) and Job Center. PTC offers vocational training and the Job Center, assistance in CV and letter writing. The last stop was Pedagogy Teachers Training. Many students expressed an interest in teaching, and this facility provides an introduction to the qualification.

A successful sharing event is held at the high school. Three guest speakers inspired the students to dream big.

Lastly, we invited some of the teachers from the Learning Center in Siem Reap to share their experiences with the students. Topics included not giving up on your dreams, the difference between university and vocation school, steps to achieving goals, and positive mental health.

 2013: We hosted our first Skills Fair in Kralanh. It was attended by 700 students 15 years old and up. The objective was to connect students to further education opportunities and showcase future possible careers and employers.

An investment banker turned PEPY volunteer spoke about having the courage to follow your dreams. Students learned about stepping outside their comfort zones to reach for opportunities.

Dream class students presented their ideas to an audience of 50 peers, the PEPY Youth Board, and PEPY staff.

Forty-three students traveled from Kralanh to Siem Reap to learn about scholarships, team building, and becoming a teacher by visiting the Provincial Training Center and NGO Journeys Within Our Communities.

 2012: Eight students presented to their peers about their interests and what progress they’d made towards their personal goals. This included students who didn’t traditionally speak up in class.

Students took steps towards fulfilling short-term ambitions. One student’s ambitions to become a songwriter resulted in the composition of 20 songs. Another began a savings plan, while another set up a study schedule to improve English language ability.

Challenges / Lessons learned

  • In Srei Snam, the school does not have a separate space for PEPY to run Dream Classes. We share classroom with other Youth Group which is sometimes hard to provide a proper lesson because it is noisy.
  • It is very useful to conduct home visit and meet students’  parents. We can better engage them in their children’s education.
  • Dream Talk with one-on-one speaker provide greater opportunity for students to ask in-dept questions.
  • Initially the lack of a curriculum increased the pressure on PEPY Empowering Youth staff to constantly generate ideas, and lessons sometimes felt ad-hoc. However a curriculum has been in place since the 2012-2013 academic year.
  • At the outset, lessons were sometimes too general which made it difficult for students to come up with a focus or direction to think about. Students at first had trouble understanding that there was no wrong answer and that creativity and self-expression was the goal of the class.
  • As the Dream Classes program is located in Kralanh and the rest of our programs are in Siem Reap, we have found it challenging to offer as much support to the Dream Project Coordinator as is desirable. Regular planned visits are now in place along with constant support via email.
  • Working with government schools can cause scheduling challenges, especially for special events.
  • Low attendance is an issue we face. Families often pressure students to get married, migrate to Thailand for work, or stay at home to help out with domestic tasks, which lead to their drop-out from school. Students arriving late for class is also an ongoing issue.
  • In 2014, due to major countrywide changes affecting the 2014-2015 academic year, Dream Class did not commence until December, one month later than anticipated.

Dream Class initially was offered to students in grade 9 at Chanleas Dai Junior High School and grade 12 at Kralanh High School. In 2014, we chose to focus the class on grade 10, 11, and 12 students only as we found that the younger students struggled to understand some of the concepts of the class.


These articles may also interest you: