Phalla is the result of XP Missions’ ministry in Cambodia.
Many years ago, Phalla was trained in some basic nursing skills. When the Khmer Rouge took control of Cambodia she, too, was captured, but because she had these basic skills they took her to be their “nurse.” She traveled from province to province with them, living in the jungle and tending to the wounded during their battles with the government forces. This is how she ended up in Poipet, Banteay Mean Chey Province.
A little over a year ago while in Poipet, Patricia King met her as she was walking along the street. Phalla is a single mother; her husband ran off with another woman several years ago and left her and her son to fend for themselves. During a conversation with Phalla, Patricia offered to train her in some marketable job skills.
Phalla learned to do hair and nails and began working at a Christian-run spa. Though recently the spa closed down and she was jobless again. But she did have the marketable job skills. Phalla has been walking along the streets looking for clients. She says on a good day she can earn up to $5USD. She uses the money for basic living – food, school fees, and supplies for her 11-year-old son, San Tanoun, in 4th grade. However, it’s hot and tiring to walk along the dusty roads of Poipet looking for clients.
Phalla owns land and a small house in Poipet behind the City Hall. There are a couple restaurants nearby, a home-based sewing business and other government buildings. Those holding power nearby have threatened her in the past because they want her land, but she knows her rights and stands up to them.
Phalla is a new Christian and was sharing with me a couple weeks ago that she would like to start a small salon at her house. She feels there are enough potential clients around that she could make a living. It would also put her at home with her son who, as is Cambodian custom, studies only a half day at public school. She would need to put fill dirt in front of her house and put up something like a steel-ribbed structure. She’s prepared to build it one step at a time as she’s been saving money. I felt the Lord touch me to assist her by giving her $500USD toward the $1,000 project. This will get the fill dirt in and possibly the frame of the structure up. I told her we’ll look at the finances next month and see what else I can do. The money that I’m helping her with comes from churches and individuals who are partnering with us to plant a life-giving church in Poipet. It’s because of their generosity we can help Phalla and her son on to the next step of their journey.
Phalla’s house is very simple – what we call a Living Room – with a simple bedroom and kitchen that is unfinished and has dirt floors. She cooks over coal. She does have electricity and ceiling fan in the Living Room. I noticed she had three cats in the house. Being a cat-lover myself, I asked her if she liked cats. She said she didn’t particularly like cats, but she decided to raise them (she has seven now) to help keep the rats away. She said she doesn’t have a clothes closet or wardrobe and she doesn’t want the rats to eat her clothes.
I’m looking for a Children-at-Risk sponsor for Phalla’s son, San Tanoun. This would be someone who would make a one-year commitment and possibly a commitment through his primary school years, to give $35 per month. Twenty dollars would go toward groceries, $5 would be put in a saving account for emergencies, $5 would be used for school needs – a uniform, books, supplies, and the rest would cover admin expenses. If you’re interested in this please contact me.
Thank you again for your faithful support to Christian Fellowship Poipet.
- Next week high school students are out of work. We have a YWAM Team with us and it will be a great opportunity for outreach. Pray for a gathering of the harvest – true conversion and being added to the church and discipled.
- Pray for Rorn Tout, Sam Eng, Savuth and his wife, Pisey, and Bunna and his wife, Kim. They are the workers on the ground. Pray for discernment, wisdom and leading of the Holy Spirit in their ministry.
- Keep praying for musicians. We have a piano player and it looks like a guitar player coming along. Pray that God would put together a music team. We’re also trying to form a dance team. Pray that God would put it together.
- Pastor Chuck McCaul (Christian Fellowship Poipet, Cambodia)