What is Hachidori Project? (*Hachidori means Hummingbird in Japanese.)
Hachidori Project is a small group was planned to begin with the construction of schools, and end. However, the reality in Cambodia is, many children can’t attend a school even if it is there. We've witnessed this. Now, this project began a new activity to send children to school.
In 2013, we founded the NGO. Until then, it was a civil society organization, but because our works would have been limited that way, we decided to found the NGO.
We did this to help solve the “migrant worker problem” among the local residents in Cambodia. After half a year since the school’s construction, we attended the opening ceremony. But when we went to the Hachidori School, the headmaster was not there. Before the construction, we talked with him and listened to his passion for this project. At that time, we had promised to meet again in the opening ceremony. We were shocked very much, and it was then that we discovered the “migrant worker problem.” Villagers can earn revenue making rice during the rainy season. However, there is almost no way to earn an income when the dry season comes. So, the villagers will migrate to Thailand taking their whole family with them. Meanwhile, of course the children cannot go to school. Even back in the village during the rainy season they cannot pass the tests and go to the next grade. It is a vicious circle.
We have found that there is a need to eliminate the “migrant workers,” in order for children to continue to attend school without inconvenience. And we are working to achieve that.
Dry season: early November - mid-May.
Rainy season: late May - late October. Rather than rain all day long, it falls for an hour or two of strong rain.
■ Our Current Work
In September 2012, we finished construction of Hachidori School, and visited again Prey Kjong village for the opening ceremony. At that time, we discovered the problem of working away from home. More than we could imagine, they were migrating the whole family including children.
In the dry season in Cambodia, local people hardly gain an income without migrating. Some families migrated for more than six months in a year. We noticed that if we do not resolve the migrant problem, children cannot attend school in the true sense of the term.
This project was started to found an industry in the village, that is “Orkun koh” paper. It is 100% Cambodian origin, and when our team is gone in the future, it will be operated solely by Cambodians. Earning of income this way can solve the migrant worker problem. The primary goal is so that children can go to the school throughout the year, and graduate to go on to the next school. Currently, local staff are training villagers in paper making. In the free time they braid misanga and English and Khmer language classes are also held.
The final goal of the Hachidori Project is "to make a country where no help is needed.”
Though we have a small resources, we think their educational environment is the main cause of their continuing poverty for a long time, so we mainly took action for education. Children who live in villages are not able to graduate from elementary school. There are many students who for example; cannot read a book, write in a notebook, and do math. To change this situation, we believe that it is the best way that Cambodia will become a country where no assistance is required. As a first step, we are struggling every day to support children to advance from junior high school to high school.