The Embassy of Japan held a welcome party to greet 16 students and two teachers from Tottori-Nishi High School in Japan and 16 students and two teachers from Bak Touk High School in Phnom Penh last week. The event was called “Japan Cambodia Teenage Ambassador”.
The two countries exchanged students, who will learn about each other’s culture.
Speaking at the party, a secretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Pit Chamnan, said that Cambodia had established diplomatic relations with Japan 62 years ago. Japan is a major development partner in various sectors.
One of the companies that invested a lot is AEON. It is the largest Japanese company investing in Cambodia, with units including AEON Microfinance and AEON Mall.
Mr Chamnan was thankful to AEON’s 1 Percent Club for providing scholarships to students to study in Japan since 2006, constructing a total of 149 primary schools, building water supplies, supporting the Sihanouk-Aeon Museum, providing support to landmine victims, engaging children to take care of the environment by planting trees, and especially for organising the Teenage Ambassador programme.
“Through the programme, I hope students can learn to accept differences, understand similarities, and adapt to different situations and multicultural environments, “It also helps students to improve both their hard and soft skills, especially the capacity for complex communication, civic literacy and global awareness. Moreover, it encourages participants to learn languages from one another,” Mr Chamnan added.
According to Japanese Ambassador in Cambodia, Hidehisa Horinouchi, he is always trying to find ways to strengthen the relationship between Cambodia and Japan. Therefore, he said, the Teenage Ambassador programme is meaningful as it strengthens relations between students as well as the countries.
Mr Horinouchi said: “I am so thankful to the Ministry of Education and relevant officials for preparing to greet students from Japan. I hope both countries’ students can gain experience and strengthen relations in the future.”
Kheang Lykeang, a student from Bak Tuok who went to Japan in September said that she was selected due to her good performance at school.
And during her week in Japan, she learned and got plenty information about Angkor Wat temple. She said that in her math class there, she noticed that Japanese students study harder and longer than Cambodian students.
“I learned a lot about the education system of Japan, as well as the customs and traditions of Japanese families. Although they are busy, they still have time for family and sharing their daily activities. I gained more courage and confidence after coming back from there,” added Ms Lykeang.