Dear Friends and Partners,
I write to you today to share with you a decision I have reached after my recent visit to Cambodia and following a deep and serious review with Heng. For many reasons we have decided that the time is rapidly approaching when we will need to close Tabitha Cambodia. I wanted you to be among the first to know.
Covid has had a significant impact on Cambodia and on our projects as it has worldwide. The level of donations to Tabitha Cambodia have fallen significantly over the last two and a half years. Many staff have had to find additional income sources to support their own families. Government restrictions on the movement of people around the country has impacted the number of new families joining the savings program and existing families in the program are now well established. House building has been severely limited, and our silk products/ cottage industry has all but decimated, overall, Tabitha Cambodia staff numbers have reduced. The senior staff of Tabitha have been with us for more than 20 years and they are reaching an age where many will retire over the next two years.
So, to protect the families on the savings program, our staff and our donors interests we believe it is best for us to facilitate an orderly closure of our projects and Tabitha Cambodia in December this year.
It has been a 28-year journey to date- a life-time of Tabitha Cambodia working with the peoples of Cambodia. We have directly impacted more than a quarter of the current population. With your help and donations, our achievements have been many. Cambodia’s current development is at an amazing pace and the deep poverty which existed in the regions Tabitha works when I arrived in 1992 is no longer visible.
While we will close our doors in December, our final celebration will be in early January with a final house housebuilding team of all who would like to come and celebrate with us, and to close with a final dinner along with the staff. I will be in Cambodia for September and October to assist with the closing and return in late December for our final time together as Tabitha Cambodia.
I don’t have the words to express my deep gratitude to each of you for your generosity all these years. I can assure you that each of you have impacted our people for many years to come. We are committed to finishing all our commitments to you and all our donors. Houses, Schools and Wells will continue to be built with moneys received. Your gifts have been life transforming for hundreds of thousands of people.
Personally, I am deeply humbled and grateful to my God for allowing me the privilege of working in Cambodia. I am thankful to my God for each of you who have stood with us in this Journey.
I am hoping that you might be able to come and see what we have done together before we close.
In deep humbleness and thanksgiving.