Cambodian Community Dream Organization, Inc.

Dream Journal – May 2023

Happy Mother’s Day

This Mother’s Day we want to shine a bright and proud light on a new mother Sandy Ngo Moubarek by sharing her tribute to her Cambodian mother. We have known Sandy since her college times when she volunteered with us to organize a volunteer mission for pre-med students. As a first-generation Cambodian American she worked and sacrificed to break down many barriers to pursue her dream of becoming a doctor. We are so proud of you Dr. Sandy and congratulate you on becoming a mother of a beautiful little girl.

As a child of a Cambodian refugee living in the United States, I often find myself yearning for the traditions and customs of my motherland. Now more than ever, I wonder how I will continue to pass down these traditions to my daughter. I am reminded that despite my mom having lost everything she still managed to bring with her the most valuable things to share and pass on to the next generations to come– her resilience.


My mom's resilience is reflected in the food, language, and traditions she shares with my siblings and me. Sitting on the floor to eat, surrounded by family and the comforting familiarity of freshly cooked rice, is like wrapping myself in a warm blanket of memories. It's a reminder of the challenges my mom faced as a refugee, but also of the joy and love that she brought with her to this new country.


The fragrant aroma of kroeung made of lemongrass, garlic, makrut lime leaves, ginger, and turmeric is like the sweet scent of victory, a reminder of the battles my mom fought and won as a refugee. The complex flavors of her dishes, from the spicy beef skewers to the Num Banhchok (fermented fish curry noodle soup), are like the different facets of her personality - strong, yet tender; fierce, yet nurturing.


The songs and lullabies my mom used to sing to me, I find myself singing them to my daughter. The fables and stories that were told through these songs are things I never want to forget. The way my mom passes down these traditions to me and now my daughter is like a bridge that connects the past and present, linking our family's resilience across generations.

For this Mother’s Day and the many more that will come after, I hope that mothers everywhere remember that even if we feel like we do not have much to offer, remember that the things we hold dear - our culture, our traditions, our recipes - can never truly be taken away, as long as we continue to honor and cherish them. It's a legacy that we will continue to pass down, a tribute to the strength and perseverance of those who came before us.

Happy Mother’s Day Mami!

Consider making a donation

in honor of your mother and

sharing a favorite story about her.


Opening Doors to a Bright Future 

The Soroptimist International President, Maureen Maguire, and her colleague Margaret Emsley visited our Women Empowerment/Life Skills program in early May. CCDO is midway through the 2 years President’s Appeal which is sponsoring this life-changing program and we are honored to have had Maureen and Margaret check in on the progress.

“My visit to The Project ‘Opening Doors to a Bright Future’, has been unbelievable. The work that the CCDO team are doing to make a difference to improve the lives of the women and girls is amazing. I saw for myself when speaking to the beneficiaries how much they have learnt and how this has increased, not only their incomes, but also their self esteem and confidence. The SMART women will continue to work long after the project finishes and I know that it will be in capable hands”

Uniforms for Hope

Just in time for the new school mid-year semester, Maureen Maloof and Uniforms for Hope gave a generous donation of $5,000 to help 500 Cambodian children get uniforms so they can go to school. A reminder that the school in Cambodia is universal and free, however, the children have to wear a uniform and bring school supplies to be able to attend classes. Many children wear tattered outgrown uniforms from their older siblings, so a crisp new white uniform brings joy and motivation. 


Lori and Toby Goodroad wanted to be hands-on and help build the well that they donated.

This was their second visit to Cambodia and they wanted to see the progress in the villages. Thank you for your support and your testimonial, Lori and Toby!

“I was fortunate to be able to go out with the CCDO in 2018 while another well we donated was being constructed. This gave us a better understanding of how the program works and the impact it makes on the family and community. The extensive process the CCDO uses to identify and follow up with donation recipients gives us great confidence that we are giving to a worthy cause.

This April my husband and I were able to go out to the Angkor Thom district to help with another well. Being with the family on construction day, helping build the well, and watching as the family prepared a feast with the food we brought for them was very special. The local village chief came out to personally thank us and presented us with a certificate for helping the poor in his community. This was a rewarding day that we will remember for the rest of our lives.”


We are grateful to George West of Las Vegas, who regularly donates to either the WASH or the Education program. His latest generous donation of $2,055 is slated for both wells and latrines. George realizes the importance of latrines, especially needed for the dignity and safety of rural women. He is certainly not shy to have his name on a toilet in Cambodia. Way to go, George!

Ordinary people can do extraordinary things
to change lives, one child at a time.
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram