All posts filed under: projects2016

Chheourn Samphors

A 41-year-old widow Chheourn Samphors was a traditional silk weaver at her hometown in Ks’ach Kandal District, Kandal Province before becoming a construction worker in Phnom Penh. The low demand and value of Khmer products in the market and the high price of the materials made her struggle to make ends meet as a silk weaver. She said she had no choice but to change occupation, and construction work was the first job on her mind. Samphors has been working for three years in the construction sector. She first entered as an apprentice working on small individual-house constructions with little daily wage. Now she works at Hong Kong Land, one of the huge construction projects in Phnom Penh. Her duties are mixing and carrying limestone. She said working conditions in a big company are much better than on small private construction projects that she used to work because if anyone gets injured during working hours, medical bills will be paid for, unlike the small construction projects when workers must pay for themselves. Inequality is still …

Chok Yeoun

Chok Yeourn, whose hometown is in Phnom Penh Thmey, right in the capital of the Kingdom, has become a construction worker with her husband, not because it was her choice, but for the needs of her seven-member family. Before she became a construction worker, Yeourn sold fish and vegetables found in and around the lake at the market which ended in failure. After a while, she started selling fruit and vegetables from her bike; she cycled around and stopped at different markets in Phnom Penh. But she is not very fit and this made it impossible for her to cycle around for hours every day and business was not very profitable so she joined her husband working on a construction site. She started as an apprentice mixing limestone and cement, carrying sand and cement bags to mix, and carrying tiles; sometimes she was commanded to stand on the scaffolding to apply the mixed limestone in between tile-holes. It was exhausting and dangerous for her that’s why she’s decided to switch to cleaning which is lighter …

Ros Thearith

A friendly little woman, 30-year-old, Ros Thearith, whose hometown is in Neak Leoung, has left there to work on a Diamond Island construction site since 2013. She earns 18,000 KHR per day which equals US$4.50. Thearith has six siblings; three of whom work as construction workers as well. Meeting on the Diamond Island site but away from where she sleeps and workplace, Thearith described how difficult her type of job is – the nature of the job itself as well as the working conditions. “The work is much heavier than a garment factory job. And it is different from jobs in other sectors, for we don’t earn unless we work. My workplace is strict”, said Thearith, adding that “if you want to continue working, don’t talk, be ignorant and just do your job.” While talking about this, Thearith mentioned that she used to work at the Thai-Cambodian border in the Rong Kleur market. She thought about going to work in Thailand again; however, the living expenses are similar when compared with here. So, she decided …