Meet Lida Loem, Indradevi Hope Award Winner for Young Achiever
A Creative Learning Class teacher, Lida Loem, 22, was awarded Cambodia’s first ever 2011 Indradevi Hope Award for Young Achiever. The award ceremony was organized by the Women’s International Group of Cambodia, seeking to recognize exceptional Cambodian women who have worked selflessly to make a significant contribution to their community and economic development in Cambodia.
Awards were given in one of three categories: Indradevi Hope Award for Dedication, Indradevi Hope Award for Leadership and Indradevi Hope Award for Young Achiever. Winners were given a plaque, certificate and $1,500.
The Indradevi Hope Award for Young Achiever was awarded to Lida Loem for her dedication in supporting a group of students as they organized a volunteer group called Volunteers for Community Development (VCD). This group’s mission is to help teach English, as well as environmental awareness and morality, to the children in rural villages in Chanleas Dai commune of Siem Reap Province.
As one of the 3 winners among 48 candidates, Lida says she is proud of herself and her team’s effort. “I am so excited to get this award. It is the cooperation from all members of the VCD team,” says Lida, adding that her thoughts were never on awards or public acknowledgement when she started working with VCD.
“My purpose of volunteering with VCD is to share my knowledge to other students as they are not able to afford extra classes,” claims Lida. “Even during the competition, I did not care about winning the award. I was just happy to share what my team and I have done to help the children and the community with the optimism that others will devote their time to help their community like us.” When asked on how she is going to spend the $1500 award, she happily said, “the money does not belong to me but VCD.”
Originally from Pursat province, a graduate of the Centre for Information Systems Training (CIST), Lida moved to Siem Reap to join PEPY as an IT assistant in November 2009. Now she is a Creative Learning Class teacher in a small community in Chanleas Dai commune of Siem Reap.
Lida devotes most of her free time to help VCD’s work. Her responsibilities are to support the youth leaders who are managing VCD, to coordinate volunteers to teach English to other children, and to organize rubbish collection teams in all of the communities in Chanleas Dai. In addition to teaching children, VCD’s new project is a community vegetable garden and fish farm to improve nutrition among their families and neighbors.