Un Soklai

Soklai (front left) on the way for a job interview at Sokha Beach Resort, Sihanoukville in 2010

My name is Un Soklai. I am 24 years old. I have 7 siblings and I am the fifth child in the family. I graduated from PKH Centre in 2010. I don’t have a diploma or Grade 12. Because of my living condition, I only did Grade 9 in 2006-2007. Then my oldest sister found a job for me in a factory. My first salary was only $50 per month and after probation I got stable salary only $70-$80 per month. I always hope one day I will still have chance to continue my study. My family also know and understand my willingness to learn.

One day, my sister’s friend brought a message to me about PKH. That was the new chance for me and my oldest sister also approved me to take this chance. I didn’t know much about PKH. I just knew they give a chance to poor Cambodian people to learn English. I was happy and nervous at the same time to go for the ad-mission interview.

I was so happy as my first impression of PKH Centre made me think it’s the very best place with big building inside and farm outside of the centre. This made me remember who I am.

I was really grateful what PKH pro-vided to me. There are many things such free accommodation inclusive of 3 meals, and stationery. More over, there is good advice and care from teachers and staff. I was not a Christian at that time and it was the chance for me to hear about God and Jesus. I did not believe as I have my own religion which is Buddhist. Anyway I love and respect God and I never show negative action or look down on Christian.

At the Centre, I lived with some good Christian friends and in God’s plan, He se-lected me to be His child. That made me feel I want to try to be Christian. Day by day I learned how to pray and read the bible with my friends. On Nov 14, 2009, I decided to be baptized with some other 50 students at CCOP – that is a church in Phnom Penh.

After 1 year in English class I contin-ued to Hospitality class, then graduated in 2010. I was the first group of students which went out for job in Front Office De-partment at Sokha Beach Resort & Spa, Si-hanouk Ville with 5 other friends.

I never think that I can pass the inter-view because I thought I am not pretty, not tall and I knew my friends are all more clev-er. On the way to Sihanouk Ville I prayed – may everything follow God’s plan and I will try from my best at the interview.

This is another testimony that God have done in my life and I realized that nothing is impossible in His hand. There were only 2 of us who passed the inter-view. We both working in front office de-partment as Operator. After around 1 year, I moved up as a Reservation Officer with the salary $120. It was very busy working in reservation section and no one want to move to this section.

After joining reservation around 1 week, my Manager and Supervisor re-signed at the same time. It was such a heavy burden for me who just joined. I was alone and in-charge room reservation sec-tion. I felt like i am an acting Reservation Manager, Assistant Reservation Manager & Reservation Supervisor. There were a new manager, supervisor and officer com-ing one by one but after 3-4 months some walked out some resigned. My reservation office welcome and farewell very often. I almost fall down and there was no energy to go on and want to give up, but I always ask God for patience until we have full team. I worked quietly and my Front Office Manager encouraged me a lot and the GM promoted me as reservations supervisor with the salary around $300. There were some duty manager and some staff knew this information. They were not happy and look down on my education background that is not suitable with my new position.

I felt sad too to hear that and thanks God for giving me patience so that I can have this day and thank God again for this half year I have full team of 5 people. So now I can take this some free time to con-tinue Grade 12 this year. I pray hard I can go to university next year.

Un Soklai
Reservations Supervisor
Sokha Beach Resort, Sihanoukville
September 2015