Valery Lavigne is a second year Peace Corps volunteer serving in Koh Kong, where she has facilitated an art club and a culture club since last year. In 2013, she and her students organized the school’s first ever event in order to raise money to attend Create Cambodia. It was a Valentine’s Day festival where they performed their play for Create Cambodia. It was very successful, so this year, the students really wanted to put on another event at the school. This year, they decided to host a talent show!
Students from Valery’s Art Club and Culture Club organized themselves into two committees: one managed the logistics of the show and one managed the collecting of donations and selling. For the latter, the students made necklaces and flowers out of paper to sell to the audience. The students who managed the logistics of the talent show organized the student performers, created the program for the show, and were the MCs. The show was heavily invested in by the community. The stereo and microphones were borrowed from a teacher, the stage was borrowed from the local wat, and the school donated some money to buy prizes and certificates for the student performers.
This talent show was the school’s second ever event. It ended up being a great success! There were over 25 student performers from grades 7 to 12 who sang, danced, and performed an original play. Over 150 community members came and the students raised over $70 to attend Create Cambodia and do other arts projects at the school. Teachers and community members learned more about the benefits of including the arts at school. Not only did students increase their confidence in creating and performing art, public speaking and event planning, but the community was able to gain an artsy experience that they will remember for ages!