It takes a crowd to save a roof!


Cambodia Teacher Training Project (CTTP) Dormitory is officially open.

Saturday 19 January 2019 • Kandal Teacher Training College Campus, Ta Khmau

A year and a half ago, Barry Sutherland tossed a book on my desk – it was a guide on how to run a crowdfunding campaign. He wanted us to do this at ISPP, to raise $200,000 for the repair of the trainee teachers’ accommodation building at the Cambodia Teacher Training Project (CTTP).

I went slightly pale, had a little lie down and, after a bit of procrastinating, read the book.

Soon after, we threw the book away.

It turns out, there are many ways to complete a project, and for this one there were hundreds of people involved. While some of the book’s tips and tricks helped us to get started, it quickly became obvious that running a campaign to fix a building in Cambodia is quite different to crowdfunding the latest cool tech gadget in the USA.

First we gave it a name – A Roof Over Their Heads – then we went to work.

Thankfully, we had the crowd… which was made up of many different crowds. We had the crowd of ISPP families and staff who donated money, and their friends and family from around the world who did the same. The crowd of people who put their hands up to give their time, talents and creativity to fundraising events. The crowd of runners who put on their shoes and found supporters to sponsor their race on campaign’s behalf. The crowd of organisations both locally and abroad, who saw what we were doing and lent a much-needed financial hand.

And after a year, we had $120,000 and the support of key partners, including Orkide Villa and Jotun Cambodia, who worked with us to reduce the expected cost of the project, and then worked around the clock to have the repairs done during the CTTP’s school break.

On Saturday 19 January 2019, we were happy to gather with another crowd – the grateful trainee teachers and CTTP staff and supporters who turned out to see H.E. Pit Chamnan, Secretary of State, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, officially open the refurbished building at the CTTP campus. The trainee teachers performed a blessing dance, and His Excellency and Mr Barry Sutherland cut the ribbon to declare it open.

We were very lucky to have many of our supporters and major donors present, and with a special guest, Mr Tim Hunt, who read a letter on behalf of his parents, Ron and Annie Auckland, who were the first Director and Lead Teacher at CTTP, and who continue their support to this day.

What an achievement! Every single person and organisation who contributed to this amazing project – we commend you! Together, this crowd was able to keep a Roof Over Their Heads, and this is something that these young Cambodian educators will never forget.

Thank you for your support of the future of education in Cambodia.

– Lindy Leonhardt, Communications and Marketing Manager


Remember what it used to be like? See here:

Now, please, have a look at the video which shows just how far we’ve come! Watch here and see the amazing transformation and the wonderful official opening event.

For more photos, see CTTP Dormitory Opening Ceremony album (Facebook).

Share this post!

Read more from the Blog

ISPP – International School of Phnom Penh