by Ou Tong Hour

Impact Hub Phnom Penh's "Impact Stroll" is a discovery tour, enabling people to explore and learn more about different social enterprises around Phnom Penh. It hopes to encourage young Cambodians to pay more interest in businesses that are positively changing the community in which they live, and hopefully inspire them to form a social business as well.

The second Impact Stroll on the 4th of September 2016 saw 20 young bright Cambodians including university students, fresh graduates, as well as working individuals. The stroll guided its participants to 5 different social enterprises in Phnom Penh. Let's take a look at a brief profile of each of these social enterprises.

Cambodian Living Arts

The first social enterprise that we visited was Cambodian Living Arts. Founded by Mr. Arn Chorn-Pond, Cambodian Living Arts's purpose is to facilitate the transformation of Cambodia through traditional arts, while empowering Khmer artists. This organization wants to see the traditional performances of Cambodia on the international stage and wishes to make Cambodia famous world-wide for its cultural and intangible intellectual arts. While visiting Cambodian Living Arts, we were also able to witness the rehearsal from the Chapey Dong Veng team, which is one of the teams from Cambodian Living Arts. Ms. Yon Sokhodrn, the program coordinator, welcomed us and gave us a general overview about the organization.
Visit Cambodian Living Arts' Website
Visit Cambodian Living Arts' Facebook Page

Romdeng Restaurant

After visiting Cambodian Living Arts, the participants took a Tuk Tuk to enjoy their lunch at Romdeng restaurant, a social enterprise that helps marginalized Cambodians and street children through job trainings and employment. Part of the Tree Alliance, initiated by Friends International, the restaurant offers scrumptious and high quality food options to Cambodians and foreign tourists with the major purpose to create jobs for Cambodians and help street children build their future by providing them sufficient skills development. It was our pleasure to have Ms. Maelle Barbancon, the social business coordinator of Friends International talk to us about the vision and mission, as well as the business model of Romdeng restaurant, Tree Alliance, and Friends International as a whole. The participants really enjoyed the discussion and learned quite interesting stories and structures of the organization.
Visit Tree Alliance's Website
Visit Romdeng's Facebook Page


After lunch, Romdeng restaurant offered us a free Tuk Tuk ride to their hand-crafted souvenir store, Friends 'N' Stuff, also an association of Friends International. The shop helps create jobs for the parents of the street children that Romdeng (and other alliances) is helping. Friends International believes that one of the root causes that leads to children ending up on the streets is because their parents force them to do so as they do not have any source of income. Hence, Friends 'n' Stuff was established to generate jobs for the parents of those children so that they would not force their children to go back to the streets after being trained by the organization. Our participants were able to look around the store and purchase souvenirs- everyone felt very positive about it.
Visit Friends International's Website
Friends'N'Stuff's Facebook Page

Ta Prohm Souvenir Store

After exploring Friend'N'Stuff, the stroll took its participants by foot to Ta Prohm Souvenir Shop. Ta Prohm Souvenir Shop is a handicraft shop that sells Cambodian-style products made by disabled Cambodian women. Mrs. Chim Kong, the founder of Ta Prohm, is also one of the disabled women in this small-size social business. The participants were able to learn about the difficult life that Mrs. Chim Kong had been through and got inspired by her passion and determination to help those who are unable to move freely such as herself.
Find Ta Prohm by Clicking Here...

EcoSense Cambodia

After getting inspired by Ta Prohm, the stroll continued its journey by foot to meet EcoSense Cambodia at the Royal University of Fine Arts. We had the founders of EcoSense Cambodia speak with us about the social and environmental issue of plastic overconsumption in Cambodia. The participants were very curious about the products of EcoSense, which offer alternatives to plastic boxes that are very environmental friendly and are biodegradable, as they are made out of sugarcane fiber. The participants were also introduced to some simple ways to reducing their use of plastic.
Visit EcoSense's Website
Visit EcoSense's Facebook Page

Dine In the Dark

It was another walk to our next stop- Dine In the Dark (DID). It was an honor to have Mr. Savy Lach, the restaurant manager give the participants a general overview of the restaurant including its objectives. Dine In the Dark is a restaurant where customers have their meal in complete darkness. The purpose is to give the customers the experience and understanding of the difficulty that visually impaired people have everyday. All the staff who work there are visually impaired, creating jobs for the blind who sometimes struggle to find gainful employment.

DID also offered a glimpse of their dining experience by providing some amazing cocktails for free to our participants. Everyone really enjoyed sitting in the dark socializing while enjoying the cocktails without their smart gadgets with them, as it is the rule of the restaurant that prohibits the customers from having anything that creates light in their dark dining room.
Visit DID's Website
Visit DID's Facebook Page


Chan Dara

"I really think that it was a well-spent Sunday. I'm so grateful that I was able to join the event alongside a number of other amazing individuals with the same energy, enthusiasm, and intentions. What really pleased me the most is the fact that I got to meet so many entrepreneurs who are extraordinarily inspirational. I like how the activities were squeezed into one day with relatively enough time in between. Overall, I'm content with it. Thank you to all the people behind this for making it happen."

Stay Updated

Like us on Facebook to get the updates about the upcoming Impact Stroll happening on November.
Visit Social Enterprise Cambodia's Facebook Page
If you would like to explore more about other social enterprises around Cambodia, Visit Social Enterprise Cambodia's Website.

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