Heather Hui, Assistant Field Director (July 7, 2018)
Thanks to the grace and guidance of the Lord, today we are sharing with everyone the new visions God has given us, Project 20/20. Every time God gives us a new task, we always have mixed feelings, because we know clearly that it is not an easy task. But the harder it gets, the more we see His grace.
In 2011, Pleroma Home for Girls was established in Phnom Penh to provide home-style Christian holistic services for some underage girls who were trafficked and sexually assaulted. After seven years of development, we have positioned ourselves aptly as an NGO in Cambodia, and the team has matured. But we have not stopped there. On the contrary, we put efforts to respond to the needs of Cambodia in terms of its social development.
In the past few years, although the number of underage victims has decreased, the number of victims who have been deceived and forced into marriage to China has increased. At the sometime, globalization has also increased human trafficking. Therefore, this year in May, we launched the Pleroma Home for Women to provide residential services for adult women. As the one and only Chinese Christian organization in Cambodia that provides services for those who were trafficked and sexually abused, we are pleased to see that the Cambodian government is committed to go after some fraudulent NGOs that weren’t doing their job. However, this is the current situation: the government no longer issue any new permits to new NGOs, they also set up different rules to regulate existing NGOs. For example, the land area of our location should not be less than 2,000m^2. The government’s requirement is reasonable, and our homes are indeed too small. In the past, there were many girls who asked to go out for a walk. It is really important to give space for girls who felt trapped and suppressed physically and spiritually.
In the past two years, due to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, many land in Phnom Penh has been purchased by Chinese people in large numbers. The price of land and rent keep skyrocketing. If we don’t own our land and property, rent will become a big burden. And now is the time to buy land, because the land price has dropped slightly due to the general election at the end of July. It is predicted that when the election end, the price will rise again. From these considerations, we must enter a new stage – purchase of properties for long-term planning, so that the development of ministry is no longer passively influenced by the owner of the property, whether terminating contract with us, or bringing the rent high up; It is also our hope that our services will no longer be affected by renting situation, we hope we can develop some service facilities based on needs, such as sports therapy, horticultural therapy, and etc.; we also hope to provide enough space for people to be free from their physical and spiritual shackles, as well as sharing resources between Pleroma Home for Girls and Pleroma Home for Women.
Since the beginning of this year, we have been searching for a suitable location. Recently, through a friend’s connection, a landlord is in urgent need of money, and is willing to sell us at a price lower than the market price. The land area is 3500m^2and the price is US$159,250. The distance between the new location and the Pleroma Home for Girls is about 45 min by car. The new location has water and electricity supply; primary schools nearby; and the area is under the same government department that has been working with us. This is the best location we have seen, but the terms and condition is this: we must pay 50% of the land price on June 25, and the other 50% had to be paid in three months (i.e. mid-September). We hope we can complete the construction by the end of 2020 and relocate Pleroma Home for Girls and Pleroma Home for Women.
We ask the Lord to prepare and help us complete the fundraising by September 15th with the goal of US$159,250. The ‘cost’ for Pleroma Home for Girls and Pleroma Home for Women is expensive, but aren’t the lives and souls of these women more important than money, which will eventually fade away anyways? It is not easy to raise money, but as we have seen it time and again: in the eyes of our Father, these children and these women are loved by the Father and are precious to Him.
Will you continue to pray for us and support us financially? As you partner with us in this ministry that God the Father has given us, we shall experience His amazing work together.
(Translated by Himki Wong)