Dear friends and partners,
I had a discussion this week with two of our staff – they were very concerned about my having a health check every six months for cancer. The concern is very real for all of us as there a number of families within the Tabitha-Nokor Tep circles that are very ill with cancer. It isn’t that these people didn’t seek help – they did. But the diagnoses were anything but cancer – you worry too much, anxiety issues or your blood doesn’t have enough oxygen. Now we are comforting Tabitha staff members as they are in process of saying goodbye to a loved one.
So Heng and Raksemey are very concerned for their own families – for their wives, sisters, aunties. They are concerned for me. For them and so many others, the completion of the Nokor Tep Women’s Hospital cannot come fast enough.
Two weeks ago we had Irish visitors. One of the women owns her own ambulance service. As we were standing and talking she asked, how do I get women in Ireland to contribute? I talked about how easy it could be if we had 1 million people to donate $10 USD – the building would be complete. That part was simple enough to understand but Heather was not satisfied. How do I convince these women who will ask me – why should I help people in Cambodia when people in Ireland are suffering?
That is not such an easy question – I see the faces of women who are suffering here – I hear the fear in the voices of my staff – I know the tremendous suffering of so many. Why should anyone of us care?
The answer is that for you and me, we have all the options and opportunities for diagnoses, for care and even for helping us to say goodbye to a loved one. But In Cambodia, these options are not available. It isn’t because people here are less worthy than us; it isn’t because they do not deserve this and we do- it isn’t because the government does not care – none of those things are true.
What is true is that the country of Cambodia was completely destroyed by incidents and events that were not under the control of the population. I can’t help but think of what is happening in the Middle East today – if you ask the ordinary person there, or question the refugees fleeing if this is what they want – they will all say – we just want to live – we just want dignity, respect, and the ability to take care of our families, the ability to value our life. But this is not under their control.
That is all what Cambodians want – a chance to live a life of dignity – a life that will allow them to take care of loved ones. Yes, we must care for people within our land but we must also care for people outside our land – for it’s only by God’s grace that it is not you and I who are suffering.
$10 USD is not much for many of us – yet it can change this country of Cambodia. It can give hope and comfort; it can be a different light to the world; it can be a model that says, hey people – we all matter! We are all of value; we are all important. It is a big message – a message that signifies the goodness within us, the inestimable value of each of us.
So Wendy, Heather, Susie and all of you who stand with us – a million people with a different message- one that says people do matter – that women in Cambodia and therefore all over the world matter – that there is a different answer to a world of hurt – one of compassion, love and care.
This month we are hoping to finish pouring of the second floor and continue to pour the third floor. This month of dreaming of completion of the hospital by end of 2016 is becoming closer. This month 1 Million People from all over the world donating $10 USD would make this vision a reality – it would make the message of compassion real.
I thank my God for this privilege, I thank my God for all the Heathers and people just like her who want to stand with us. It can’t get any better!
Will you be one of the I in a Million?
1 Million People – surely we can do this,