Mr Chum Sam
46 Years Old
Village: Ou Snam
Commune: Ou Sralao
Province: Banteay Meanchey
Training: Bicycle Repairs
Injury: Landmine - 1989 when he was a soldier fighting in the war against the Khmer Rouge.
Sam enjoyed the time he spent at the vocational training centre very much. He found the practical training in the classrooms particularly difficult at the beginning of his course. However, despite the hardships early in his training, Sam now enjoys his new work immensely.
Prior to the formal training he received, Sam was immobile and confined to his home where he was forced to take care of his 5 children while his wife worked. With his new income, he is able to support his family, and his new prosthesis makes him mobile once again.
His clients consist predominantly of workers who travel the long distances to Thailand for work. The large numbers of bicycles, combined with the poor quality roads to the border, means there is plenty of work for his business.
Despite the many other bicycle repairers in the community, Sam's superior training with Lom Orng [then named CWARS] means that unhappy customers bring their business to him regularly after poor work with other repairers.
Sam earns greater than 10,000 Riel per day, and is able to repair motorbikes and small tractors as well. This makes his business quite unique in his community.
Sam was another man who struck me as a little disappointed and frustrated with his business. His business is still very young, and I think with time his business and confidence alike will improve greatly. He has young children which I think he worries about providing for. With some advice about advertising and setting his work area up a little more professionally, I believe things will improve rapidly. I think he is simply one of those students who need a little extra attention once the training is complete and they are on their own again.