The second phase of China’s Brightness Journey, an initiative focusing on human resources under the Lancang Mekong Cooperation, was launched yesterday at the Toun Fa Chinese School in Phnom Penh.
China Brightness Journey is an initiative by the Chinese government focusing on healthcare and education.
Still in its initial stages, it was tasked to screen the optical health of Cambodian students prior to taking medical action, a public health official said.
Oum Samol, undersecretary of state with the Health Ministry, said that the project serves a dual function: to contribute to the improvement of national human resources and strengthen the relationship between Cambodia and China.
Ms Samol noted that this year marked the 60th anniversary of Cambodia-China relations, adding that the anniversary was commemorated by the launching of the second phase of the China Brightness Journey, a program that strives to improve the optical well-being of students across the country.
“The second phase under the Mekong Lancang cooperation is important,” Ms Samol said. “Students need eye check-ups and we need to conduct a lot of research into the problem – consultation as well as providing glasses to students in Cambodia.”
The second phase of the project is aimed exclusively at screening students in Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville.
According to a press release, a Chinese medical team will be deployed to schools in Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville to carry out optical screenings for about 3,400 students free of charge.
Ms Samol said that under the Lancang Mekong Cooperation, economic improvements can be strengthened by ensuring students get the medical attention they need.
“Through the Mekong Lancang project, we are able to help people get their vision back,” she said. “It will indirectly help the economic condition through improvements to human resources.”
Launched in 2015, the Lancang Mekong Cooperation aims to maintain sustainability in Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.
Its five key priorities include connectivity, production capacity, cross-border economic cooperation, water resources and agriculture and poverty education.
Jiao Jiangli, the director of Overseas Chinese Love Project, said that his foundation strongly supported the regional initiative.
“Since 2016, the charity joined and supported Brightness Journey,” he said. “We offered cataract surgery in Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar and the action yielded positive results.”
Li Jie, a representative of the Chinese embassy, said that LMC will help fulfil healthcare needs around the country.
“LMC is in compliance with our principles and is highly effective in the implementation by focusing their attention toward people’s livelihoods,” he said. “I believe that the team of doctors from China can help with the check-up of over 3,000 students and offer them the knowledge they need to understand the value of vision.”