ODA Opportunities of Development thru Art is a grassroots Registered Education NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation), formally established by Leng Touch in 2003.
His objective, together with his wife SryOn, is to offer improved employment opportunities through English and some computer education, to subsistence farming children in outlying villages.
ODA is Reg. No 3275 with the Cambodian Government, and Provincial Reg. No 171 Department of Education Youth and Sport of Siem Reap, as an Education NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation) Non-Profit designation.
Accounting for International Development UK (AfID) partnered with ODA in 2014 and facilitated two placements to strengthen ODA’s accounting & financial management. ODA is now independently supported by a UK accountant who offers ongoing training and monitoring of monthly accounts.
ODA is proud to be a partner for project J1068N with the Australian NGO, Global Development Group (GDG). Providing a governance role and assisting in the areas of planning, monitoring, and evaluating to ensure the projects are carried out to Overseas Aid Gift Deduction Scheme (OAGDS) requirements.
The ODA Story
Like so many, the story of Leng’s childhood as a 6 year old, under the terror reign of the Khmer Rouge is harrowing. Surviving those traumatic years around malnutrition, the constant fear of being targeted and killed, the risk of stepping on a land mine or grenade, is ingrained in his soul.
As a 10 year old at the end of the war, his father killed and no idea where his mother and sister were - starving and hardly able to walk, he followed the stumbling crowds along the river back into Phnom Penh.
He was one of the very lucky children, as his Aunt and Uncle managed to find him eventually, and take him into their family. His Uncle had a strong education focus and despite extreme poverty they all managed a full schooling.
As a young adult he befriended 5 street boys and soon realized they were starving. He recognised if not for his Aunt and Uncle, this would have been his life. So he felt compelled to care and educate them, as had been done for him.
This was the humble beginning of the organization that has grown into the ODA 8 Free English School’s Programs today, assisting village youngsters to future employment skills. Just one regular salary assists families to eat three times a day all year.
ODA EDUCATION SUPPORT INCLUDES:
8 Free single room English schools, Solar powered, with toilets and wells.
Over 1450 students attending classes.
8 Kindergartens 2-4pm daily.
English classes from Beginner to Intermediate level, 4-5, 5-6 and 6-7pm six nights a week .
Introduction to computers offered at 4 ODA schools 10-2pm, 4 days a week.
Teachers are trained by the ODA schools manager, and currently 16 of them are in the ODA university support program.
Yearly Education Authority supervised exams are conducted.
No Uniform = No Government School. The ODA Yearly Government School Uniform Fund helps some 703 children access government school.
The ODA Free English and Computer schools
Leng's concept grew until in 2003 he formally established ODA as a registered Education NGO with the Cambodian Government and Department of Education. His objective, together with his wife SryOn, is to offer improved employment opportunities through English education, to subsistence farming children in outlying villages. Plentiful employment exists in the booming Siem Reap tourist industry, however, even for basic housekeeping, baggage and doorman employment, the primary requirement is for clear spoken English.
ODA extension programs
One of these schools has a residential School component: This school provides a safe environment, education and care to disadvantaged children who have no family, or no one able to care for them.
ODA currently supports 30+ children at this school. The students attend regular Khmer school plus English, computer, Khmer culture and art classes are offered.
On passing year 12 these students are able to access University courses of their choice under the ODA University Program.
ODA Art Project
Prior to the 7 additional schools expansion, Leng and the students art sales provided the initial education expenses. Art lessons are an integral part of the ODA Central students’ education.
Sales of art students creative works plus packs of gloss Childrens Art Cards are offered in the ODA school On Site Gallery, and at overseas Art Exhibitions hosted by kind interested supporters.