Today, New Futures Organisation operates several different projects in and around Takeo town. The New Futures Children’s Home was the starting point from which our other endeavours have developed. In late 2007 a small orphanage was on the verge of collapse and it was around this time that Neville O’Grady, a volunteer from the UK with a background in NGO management, was volunteering at the children’s home. After discovering the severity of the situation, in 2008 he took measures to ensure its survival and the protection of the young people living there.
The orphanage was renamed New Futures Children’s Home and New Futures Organisation was formally registered as a charity in the United Kingdom and Cambodia as an international non-government organisation (INGO). NFO was established with the purpose not only of overseeing the children’s home, but also to develop and implement other projects designed to help support disadvantaged young people in the Takeo area. Over the next few years, with the hard work of NFO’s staff and international volunteers and with the support of our partner organisations, NFO had gradually transformed the run-down children’s home into a bright, friendly, well-governed and stable place for young people to live and develop.
As New Futures Organisation began to grow and develop its reputation and contact base in the surrounding area, a need was identified for access to education in several of the rural villages around Takeo. Many youngsters in these villages miss out on formal education due to the demands of a subsistence agricultural lifestyle, the difficulty of transportation, especially in the rainy season, and the financial requirements of attending a regular state-run school. Therefore, NFO undertook the development of a network of schools in these rural villages, providing free education to local children. At present, we run seven such rural schools, with work ongoing to expand both the number of locations and the curriculum offered within each school.
Sadly, after many years of hard work and dedication, Neville O’Grady suddenly passed away on 6th November 2013. This changed everything for NFO and lead to the unfortunate closure of our childrens’ home at the end of December 2013.
A new chapter for New Futures Organisation was about to begin. After repatriating a majority of the children back into their villages we have set up a drop-in centre for the children still attending school in Takeo Town where they receive lunch and additional lessons in English and in the near future computer studies classes. New Futures Organisation is now a local Cambodian NGO assisted by international donors and volunteers.
To ensure ongoing support to all of our children we have arranged for a care package to go out to all the children every month consisting of rice, soap, toothpaste, clothes detergent and every three months they receive shampoo and a new toothbrush. We also provide their school uniforms twice a year as well as all school books, pens and pencils for the year so that all children continue their education with the aim of graduating from university.
In the years since its formation, NFO has been transformed into a vibrant, successful organisation which is well-known and respected as an important part of the local community, and has a growing reputation at the national and international level. We work closely with the Cambodian ministries of education, youth and development, as well as the local police and health authorities; and NFO is regarded as an important partner in the Government’s social development plans for the region. We strive to continue expanding our current work with underprivileged youth, as well as developing new projects to help further the development of young people in the local area.