Light The Lights – Phare in Phnom Penh to celebrate 25 years anniversary
We launched our 25 years anniversary in Phnom Penh last week. We were hosted by the French Institute, who were very generous with us given our strong French solidarity. We turned their home into a carnival for three days, celebrating many forms of arts, showcasing what our students learn at the campus in Battambang.
During the festival visitors – foreigners, locals, adults, children – enjoyed our visual and applied arts and performing arts school students’ performances: elements of our Sokha shows, contemporary dance, music concerts, fire twirling, artists on unicycles, on stilts, live painting, etc. Our founders, teachers and graduates worked for months to prepare their artwork for an exhibition we opened as part of the celebration, and we displayed some of the best graphic design and animation works from the student projects. It is open for one month, so you can pay a visit to see their latest artwork at the Institute!
We were also honored by the attendance of the Minister of Culture and Fine Arts, Her Excellency Dr. Phoeung Sackona for the first night, who made a speech expressing her admiration of Phare and ensured she will keep encouraging Phare to continue developing youth through the arts.
Our Executive Director, Mr. Osman Khawaja spoke about the first generation of Phare students, who have become teachers. They continue to pass the light of the art to thousands of children, that attend vocational and professional classes every year. From under USD 3,000 budget a year to over USD 1 million a year today, the investment in arts and education, and the future of hundreds of youth has increased by leaps and bounds. The funds are used to push for more comprehensible art classes for Cambodian youth. A big part of our funds come from organisations and individuals in France. Today, over 30 percent of our institutional funding is from French donors and organisations.
It was an amazing festival for us in every way. It was a great honor to show what we can do, and what PPS has achieved during the last quarter of a decade. We are happy and grateful for having been hosted by the French Institute. The celebration and development of Phare would not be feasible without all the supports of our donors, partners, the authorities, teachers, staff and students. A big thanks to all! Last but not least, we are privileged to receive a lot of positive feedback, and we are happy we could make our audience enjoy themselves a lot. We will do our very best next time as well, just keep an eye on our happenings the next months!