The Family

From Left ~ Kamnat, Vathanak, Rath, Mana and Sanai

Welcome to AKD!

We are the family of this project. The school has become our mission in life.

Kamnat: “It all started in my past. At 14 years old I had to stop studying because my parents needed help on their farm to ensure our livelihood. When I was 16, I was led into monkhood. I had the chance to study again, and my parents didn’t have to feed me anymore. During that time I was surrounded by kind and helpful people, who opened the door to education for me: that is why I was able to learn English. After seeing so many selfless and helpful people, I decided that I needed to share the knowledge they gave me. I wanted to help other young Cambodians, who rarely have the chance to get a good education”.

“As a monk I gave English lessons to others”. After I left monkhood and met my wife, Rath, we lived close to Battambang. Richard Hicks, an English language professor, became my neighbour after he married a Cambodian woman, called Boeurn Hicks. Richard learned that a lot of children were willing to learn English. They came towards him and asked if he could teach them. He wondered why they were not getting taught at school, or visiting a language school; the children told him that they were simply too poor for that. After that experience, Richard came to me and discussed starting a school to give poor people the chance to learn English. He was the most important part at AKD, because he asked for permission and spent his own money for equipment and the whole school. He employed me as a manager for the school.

After he died in 2011, we thought about what to do with the project. Would we be able to continue it, without the great Richard Hicks?

Luckily, we were surrounded by kind and very helpful people. With the help of Richard’s family, we were able to continue the AKD language project.

The time went by fast. The way to the school was not always easy for me and my family. But we are happy, as every student who learns English because of AKD makes it worthwhile.

This wouldn’t be possible without the family of Richard Hicks, the support of my wife and family and all the helpers and donations from all around the world. I’m so grateful about everything you have done for AKD and the children.