1. Great article! I’ve been feeling desperately guilty walking the streets of Thailand and Cambodia and seeing the inequality and poverty. Giving to the kids also feels like a double edged sword because I have no idea where that money is going.

    It’s so very easy to forget how little the money may be to us but how great it is to a woman trying to feed her kids.

    Still loving my short time in Cambodia so far!

    1. Hi Rhys, thank you for your comment! Yes, it is easy to help – not only in Cambodia an Thailand but also in other countries around the world. I just try to bring people into action. Not just following the advice not to give something to children, which is correct. And yes, Cambodia is an amazing country :)

  2. My wife and I spent 10 days in Siem Reap in February 2017 as part of a 3 week tour of Thailand and Cambodia. We were pre warned about the poverty and the begging. We were prepared for the worst, we did not see anywhere near what we were expecting. In the hotels there are notices that tell you not to give money to children and to donate to a local charity. So it seems that the word is getting out.
    We and 13 other people were on a tour with a company Bamboo (wearebamboo.com), we helped build a library at a local school just outside the city, giving back was a big part of the trip. It was one of the most rewarding trips my wife and I can speak for the other 13 people we were with that we have ever done.

    1. Hi Chris, thank you so much for your comment. I agree with you, what you did together with your wife and others sounds nice. But let me ask you a question: What would you have done, if you were told to donate to a local charity *and* to buy something from an local adult – especially in those areas where children are begging?

  3. I am staying in siem reap now to celebrate khmer New year and I am no stranger to cambodia and its issues, only one of which is poverty. What i have seen this year but not before is children begging for water to drink. Not around the angkor temples, but in the city itself. I strongly support your stance on begging, and instead i spend half of my budget buying things in the various markets, making sure that the products are made in cambodia. However, if children are willing to beg for a leftover of a 2000 riel bottle of water i wonder, why, and what the best course of action is to make sure poverty is not depriving vulnerable people of access to something as basic as drinking water.

    1. Dear Joost,

      first of all please excuse my late reply. I asked some Cambodian friends. They all told me, that they have never seen children, who beg like this for water in Siem Reap. But if the kids would aks someone, who sells water they would give them. Means that Khmer people help each other. So they are wondering, why the kids ask tourists.

      Maybe you get more information by asking organizations like ConCert http://concertcambodia.org/ or ThinkChildSafe http://thinkchildsafe.org/ – both are located in Siem Reap. Please let me know, if they give you helpful information. I am really interested to know. Thank you very much!

      Enjoy your time in Cambodia and a HAPPY KHMER NEW YEAR! Best :-) Inga

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