Susana and I went to a lovely restaurant last night called Friends. For our budget and Cambodia prices, it is a bit pricey. What drew us there is the fact that Friends is really a charity that runs a restaurant. The charity supports street children through, among other activities, training in the hotel and service industry. The restaurant employs the children that have completed preliminary studies and reached the level where they are ready to train in a real restaurant.
The dinner ends up being one of the best we have had in our trip so far. The service was prompt, polite and effective. Despite calling themselves students, the servers and chefs were very professional. I’d recommend a dinner on it’s own terms. Add in the fact that it is a charity as well, and this is a no brainer.
One of the challenges of traveling in poor countries is how to make a positive contribution to those that need help. Direct money handouts are possible but we have been hesitant towards this method. Susana and I have instead sponsored children through Plan Canada, often girls, that live in the countries we have visited. The Friends restaurant is another creative idea that matches up with my belief of trying to help in ways that promote growth of the people and their communities. I haven’t made a point of looking for such restaurants or other establishments before. Now, I think Ill make this apart of my local research.
How about you? How do you contribute back to the places you visit? Leave a comment to share your thoughts.