Keo Phongmany, was discriminated against from a young age because he was born with no fingers on his left hand and then lost a leg in an accident as a teenager. He became very shy as a result and thought that his working potential would be limited. Initially this seemed true, as despite studying hard and gaining a scholarship to study in the capital city, Vientiane, plus getting a job with the Lao Disabled People’s Association (LDPA), he wasn’t progressing the way he’d hoped.
“My work with LDPA was difficult as we had limited funds. I was a very shy person. I had no confidence to ask questions or share ideas when met with our partners.”
Things changed when Keo became involved in one of Cord’s projects.
He was able to attend various training courses, including effective communication, strategic planning, making the most of social media, fundraising, and writing grant applications. These sessions not only provided opportunities to learn, but also meant he could connect with other civil society groups.
Keo explains how dramatic the impact of the training has been: “After the training my confidence to exchange my thoughts is significantly enhanced. I am not afraid to raise questions, share my experience, make presentations, and be more actively involved with fundraising. This project has changed my life.”
These changes will last long into the future, as Keo explains:
“Thanks to Cord I am able to do consultancy work with a Swiss contact to coach 15 youth group members. I will be helping them to apply for jobs and prepare for project proposals. Now, I feel happy that I can share my experience to inspire and motivate disadvantaged people, to demonstrate their ability and capacity, just like other people.”
Thanks to Keo’s work, other people are also having their lives transformed. This is all made possible because of your donations. Please give generously so that we can empower more people like Keo to bring peace and freedom in their communities.