Traveling to Cambodia this past December has been The Colored Pencil Project’s biggest endeavor yet reaching 2,000 children. While abroad, Executive Director Hannah Richards and Board Member Rachel Vingsness led art workshops for children in rural primary schools.
Cambodia has the highest infant and under-five mortality rates in the region, at 97 and 141 per 1,000 live births, respectively. Vaccine-preventable diseases, diarrhoea, and respiratory infections are among the leading causes of childhood death. Maternal mortality is also high.
Malnutrition affects most Cambodian children: 45 percent show moderate or severe stunting.
Primary school enrolment rates are high, with a declining gender gap. But so many children repeat grades that it takes on average more than 10 years to complete primary school. Less than half of all students make it that far.
Accidental death, for example as a result of traffic accidents or drowning, is a serious threat to children in Cambodia.
Landmines pose a grave hazard for internally migrating children and youths who attempt to salvage unexploded ordnance and sell it as valuable scrap metal.
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