I want to go back

Konnichiwa, Mr. Ambassador!

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It’s been a busy week at AHC. After the official opening of the Outpatient Department, we also had a visit from Mr. Kumamaru Yuji, the Japanese Ambassador to Cambodia. He was here to see how the ‘Kusanone’ grant from the Japanese Embassy will help us to save lives in the future. And while he was here, we asked him for his thoughts.

What’s the idea behind a grant like this?

“Well, as a government, we deal with the Cambodian government – that’s our normal interaction. We work together on roads, bridges, irrigation and such. But there’s also a need to help to help civil society more directly, through local organizations like yours, without necessarily going to the government – and it seems to be working fine. And although the money is comparatively small compared to the bigger infrastructure projects, it’s very effective and we’ll see that right here at Angkor Hospital for Children.”

Is this an example of how you see the two countries working together in the future?

“Well, I think the relationship will be deepened, there’s no question about it. I see businesses working more closely together. And although you might not be feeling it right now in Siem Reap, in Phnom Penh there’s a great change taking place. There’s an influx of foreign businesses coming to Cambodia, including Japanese, so the relationship and the exchange will only deepen. But I hope for more, because we need a more comprehensive relationship – not just business. It has to be endorsed by people having a good sentiment towards each other. And to do that I think we need to co-operate more, we need to work with NGO’s and local people. We’re happy to do so and we’ll continue to do so.”

You can find out more about how the ‘Kusanone’ grant from Japan is helping us at AHC, on our Facebook page below.

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