December 8, 2014

Dear friends and partners,

Good will towards men – this is a sentiment that is heard often during this holiday season. It is a sentiment that means well but it is also a sentiment that points out to a glaring injustice – there is no good will towards women. Now I know what you will all say, in old English words, men actually meant people – so why not change the word? Sadly this sentiment reflects on one half of the world’s population – women or females – what would the world be like without females?

In fact, in large parts of the world, women are seen as property – people enslaved and owned by men. If a woman is fortunate, the man respects and treasures her and she, in turn, treasures and respects her husband. Yet the very fact that she is seen as property to be used and abused leads to women living lives that are hardly dignified and fulfilling.

In developing countries, such as Cambodia, the addition of poverty and lack of education adds misery to the mix. Women here suffer from gynecological infections at a very young age, infections that can be diagnosed and treated; infections that lead to body wide infections and eventually to cancerous conditions with years of pain and a long, slow lingering death.

It leads to abuse as men lose patience with their women’s inability to perform their tasks, whether that is looking after the household or the act of procreation. It leads to shame and to ostracism as women hide their bodies and their feelings from the outside world.

For 23 year old  Sok Leang, her prolapsed uterus causes her much pain, her husband is very angry with her and she sees  no hope.


 For Raksa, life has become a burden too painful to consider – yet she encourages me – soon, she says, soon, you will help me and then we will laugh together. I am comforted by one who knows that patience and hope are what matter.

Nokor Tep Women’s Hospital is an audacious vision to mitigate this situation. Our vision is to enable women to get diagnosed and treated at an early stage of infection; to cure women who are curable; to comfort women whose stage in disease has gone too far. Our intent is to bring goodwill to all people; to allow women the role of serving their husbands with dignity and pride, our intent is to encourage families to live in peace.

The construction of the hospital, thanks to each of you, is ongoing. Sieng made a short video to thank you for your help in this process. This week we poured again and 60% of the main floor is done – how very good that is! 


I am impatient with the process of building, I want it all done today but I am learning patience. I am hungering to bring a degree of peace to so many women here in Cambodia. My daughter Miriam asks – mum, what you would like for Christmas – I answer, tongue in cheek – 5,000 people to donate $1,000 dollars so that we can complete the hospital building. Ah mum, she sighs – you must have faith – it will happen – besides people can always sponsor me for the Walkathon on February 14 – yeah mum, what a Valentines present that would be. Daughters!!!!

I thank my God for the privilege of this challenge; I thank Him for each of you who stand with us in this vision, for your audacity to believe in the women of Cambodia. It cannot get any better!

From all of us at Nokor Tep Women’s Hospital, we wish each of you Good Will and Peace in this holiday season.


Nokor Tep Foundation:   Face book: Nokor Tep Women’s Hospital

Stories of Cambodian Women


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