Cambodia: Education for change by Phearong Sdeung


Phearong is one of Wedu’s first Rising Stars, she is an incredible 22 year old woman from the Kampong Cham province in Cambodia. She comes from a rural village and is the youngest of five children and first to attend university.

She has experienced from a very early age how women are withdrawn from school, often married and with a lack of education, excluded from the job market. Wedu is supporting her financially to pursue a degree in International Relations and Economics at the Royal University of Law and Economics in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

She has a very special relationship with her mentor, Marica, from Canada: “I am really excited with how my mentor encourages me and always says yes to me that I can do it. This is why I always keep going.“ She aspires to become a visionary NGO leader and an acclaimed professor in order to instill gender equality and growth in her community and country.

Phearong is one of Wedu’s first participants of the Future Income Sharing Agreements (FISAs). She did not hesitate to sign on as she say “I wants do as much as possible to give opportunity to other girls to study, thank you Wedu family for having me with you.” Phearong is already a leader as was chosen as a Young Women’s Representative for UN Women.

She was asked to provide a speech that addressed violence against women. She also founded a student run organization called Joint-of-Youth (JOY) where she and her university peers travel to rural schools in the Takeo province to teach math, English and leadership skills to children in rural schools on weekends; and has a long history as member of Khmer Youth Association advocating for leadership opportunities in Cambodia.