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Meeting Thavry Thon

Today we had the honour of listening to Thavry Thon speak about her story of bravery, courage and determination. Thavry shared how she and her family challenged social norms by pursuing an education for herself and her two brothers. Thavry expressed the struggles that come with being a young girl in Cambodia and how difficult it was to receive an education and follow her dreams. We as a group were so moved with how much drive she has to follow her passions, and how her hard work has allowed her to become successful. She explained that in order to receive education she had to endure long journeys from her small rural island, and had to look past criticism from her neighbours and other Cambodian citizens. She explained how all the hard work was worth it, as she is now the author of three successful books. I believe that everyone was inspired by Thavry’s story and how she is shaping the way for other boys and girls within her small hometown, and the cities of Cambodia. I know for myself I was incredibly moved by her determination and strong work ethic. Even when faced with challenges and old traditions of society, she followed her passion and persevered. I felt a sense of connection with her when she described her parents as her “heroes”, and talked about how their support has allowed her to follow her dreams. For me, my parents are also my biggest supporters. They too feel that education is key to success and have encouraged my sister and I to do whatever we feel passionate about. When Thavry shared her story, I felt a huge amount of gratefulness, and realised how privileged I truly am.  Hearing about the difficulty she faces to leave Cambodia to travel to different places and fulfil her dreams  is something that many of us have not experienced. By having Thvry share her story with us, we were all able to connect with her and empathize with the challenges she has faced. I feel so lucky to have heard her story, and I hope to bring home with me the lessons she taught us, of passion, bravery and determination.