World Water Day

March 22nd, 2015

Lory Keller, Social Media Coordinator

Perhaps those of us with access occasionally take for granted the water we have at the turn of a faucet or the disease-prevention we have at the flush of a toilet or the easy access some of us have to greater health through exercise each time we dive into a local community pool. With such water conveniences available it is important for us to remember that there are millions in this world who go without access resulting in disease and death.

To raise awareness about this, the United Nations designated March 22 World Water Day. The UN’s designation of this day 22 years ago has paved the way to greater access for those in need. Compassionate Eye Foundation recognizes the importance of this and focuses on helping to expand access to education, health and sustainability using the proceeds from the sale of our stock images.

We welcome the opportunity to work with like-minded organizations, such as Kids International Development Society (K.I.D.S), with whom we have worked on humanitarian ventures like the Kauk Chrey and the (very recently completed) Kompong Kleang water tower projects in Cambodia. Both projects bring quality water to over 1,000 formally underserved residents.

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Students enjoying a drink from the water tower at the Kauk Chrey School in Cambodia

 

We are also delighted to announce that to align with World Water Day, Compassionate Eye Foundation’s founder, Robert Kent, will be holding a photoshoot today in beautiful Puna, Hawaii. Kent will work with photographer, Attila Pohlmann on an Eco Holiday themed shoot. Be sure to follow us on social media for more updates!

If you’re looking for ways to participate in this year’s World Water Day to help others around the world in their quest for clean water, here are a few ideas:

  • Check out the events happening around the globe to celebrate progress and plan for future actions
  • Join in a Global Meditation Sunday, March 22. Register at Unify or on their Facebook page
  • Show your support and raise awareness by sharing what water is to you: Join the UN-Water’s #WaterIs social media campaign. Invite your family and friends to do the same, then watch as everyone’s messages are blasted out simultaneously!
  • Last but not least, volunteer or make a financial donation. At CEF, there are three ways we welcome you to make a positive impact: volunteer your time, donate your money, or purchase our fabulous stock photography through Getty Images. Make Compassionate Eye Foundation your feel-good stock-image source.

Help us ensure #WaterIs available for all!

Photo of the Week: World Water Day

March 20th, 2015

Mia Wesley, Social Media Coordinator

Did you know that more than one billion people around the world lack access to clean water? This Sunday, March 22nd, is World Water Day and in recognition of this day we’d like to share a photograph from one of our clean water projects in Cambodia taken by Vancouver based photographer, Steven Ericco. The newly developed wells funded by the Compassionate Eye Foundation benefits students as well as the residents of the Kauk Chrey and Mook Pen communities of rural Cambodia. With these projects we hope to not only improve the access to clean water but to also advocate healthier and brighter futures to the individuals within these rural communities. Clean water projects are one of the most fundamentally important projects organized by the Compassionate Eye Foundation, therefore the promotion of this day is very close to our hearts.

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Photo of the Week: Strawberry Day

February 27th, 2015

Robyn Goldsmith, Social Media Coordinator

Happy Strawberry Day! Did you know that strawberries aren’t actually a berry? The distinction is a little complex, but as it turns out, strawberries are what’s known as an “aggregate accessory fruit.” They were first cultivated in gardens in France in the 18th century, but wild strawberries have been enjoyed for centuries. To celebrate Strawberry Day, we’d like to share this scrumptious image by Edward Pond – one of many delectable food images in our Getty Collection.

 

Photo of the Week: Happy National Bird Feeding Month!

February 5th, 2015

In Hye Lee, Social Media Coordinator

Can you believe it’s already February? Doesn’t it seem like just yesterday we rang in 2015? In any case, February is National Bird Feeding Month, and we have images that are just right for the occasion. Find more images for National Bird Feeding Month or for any number of occasions on our Getty Images collection!

 

Dan Rogers: Hope in Cambodia

February 4th, 2015

Dan Rogers, Board Chair

Several Compassionate Eye Foundation board members and a photographer spent late December and early January traveling in Cambodia, the site of many of our health and education projects. Dan Rogers, board chair, shares his thoughts on the journey:

One of the great joys of being on the Board of Directors of Compassionate Eye Foundation is having the opportunity to travel to other countries and see how projects we have funded are making a difference. This year’s trip was to Cambodia.

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Cambodia is a complicated country. Thirty years of war, bombings, and a horrific genocide have had a terrible impact on the country and the people who live there. In some ways, Cambodia is in recovery mode and in other ways it is still struggling. It’s hard to not become aware of the large scale corruption and inequity in the country when looking at projects and programs to potentially fund. The government is filled with millionaires and billionaires while most people can’t afford basic health care and students pay 25 cents a day to go to school because the administrative staff and teachers are so poorly paid (an average $80-$100 a month). However, good news exists in the hard work and generosity of many ordinary Khmer, and the work being done by so many organizations like Kids International Development Society (KIDS), supported by groups like Compassionate Eye.

If you only go to Siem Reap in Cambodia (and many visitors do, simply to stay in a foreign owned hotel and visit Angkor Wat) it is a bit like going to Las Vegas to understand America. The surface of Siem Reap is not real but right below the surface it’s all there: the poverty and lack of any social safety net except for what NGOs provide; the children selling t-shirts or working in rice fields instead of going to school.

But there are great stories to share and there are the smiles of people who seemingly have little reason to. The kids who go to school love it! It is an escape from the toil of planting a rice field or working in the brutal brick yards. It is a chance for students to learn, do art, sing, and maybe a chance to change their future. Literacy is so important to making a better life and getting a better job, which in turn enables an individual to help a sister or nephew, and so on.

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One day we visited children in a program called Smart Kids, funded by KIDS. These children receive uniforms and bicycles so they can travel the 13 kilometres to high school each day. One girl we spoke with lived with her disabled father and her three younger siblings (her mother had died) in a shack on the side of the road. Another lived with her mother in the corner of a brick factory. This program enables these children and gives them a chance. We hope to help KIDS expand this program.

As its name implies, KIDS focuses on kids. We met so many wonderful children in schools and got to know a group at a girls’ home. Such lovely kids with often very difficult backgrounds, but now with a lot of hope because they are in a safe place and go to school. And there are tens and hundreds and thousands more that need the same chance. Groups like KIDS are giving some that chance. Compassionate Eye Foundation is proud to support them–and as a Compassionate Eye supporter, you should be proud too!

You can view more photos from the journey on Facebook or by following us on Instagram!

Photo of the Week: New Year’s Resolutions

January 29th, 2015

In Hye Lee, Social Media Coordinator

With the end of January looming ahead of us, it’s almost time to reflect on our New Year’s Resolutions. What was your resolution this year: to get back into shape, to spend more time with family, or to pick up a new hobby? Whatever it was, we hope you’ve been pursuing it for the past month, or at least are planning to pursue it for the rest of 2015. For us at CEF, 2015 will be filled with exciting new projects, photoshoots, and more–remember to keep up with all our news through our blog and social media channels!

Photo of the Week: More from Cambodia!

January 22nd, 2015

In Hye Lee, Social Media Coordinator

Take a look at more photos from our board members’ recent trip to Cambodia! Lakena, pictured here, is a grade 8 student in Kompong Khleang, where CEF is providing clean water to the community in collaboration with Kids International Development Society (K.I.D.S.). Stay tuned for more from our Cambodia trip!

Photo of the Week: Pool Party

January 15th, 2015

Krystele Chavez, Social Media Coordinator

The month of January always leaves us in the North Hemisphere trying to stay warm in our thick coats. A great way to beat the cold is by reminiscing about summer fun, as shown in this week’s chosen image taken by Steven Errico. Steven has volunteered his world-class talent to CEF for 8 of CEF’s 9 years, and also accompanied our CEF board members on their recent trip to Cambodia. See more of his extraordinary work on the Getty Images Collection – we’re sure you’ll find many images you could use!


 

Photo of the Week: CEF in Cambodia

January 8th, 2015

Krystele Chavez, Social Media Coordinator

Compassionate Eye Foundation board members Leah Lockhart, Communications Chair, Sue DickProjects Chair, Dan Rogers, Board Chair, and Michael Glogowsky, Board Member on Projects, are currently in Cambodia to see firsthand the positive changes that are occurring thanks to your continued support. This photograph, which was taken by Leah Lockhart at the Kompong Khleang School, shows the older students putting on a short play explaining the importance of clean water for the visiting CEF and Kids International Development Society members. We hope you continue to stay updated with our board members’ trip via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

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CEF Ends the Year in Cambodia

December 26th, 2014

Dan Rogers, CEF Board Chair

It’s been a very exciting week. December 21 was the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year. For many this is a time for reflection and “lighting the night”. Lantern festivals and Christmas lights abound in Vancouver. And we can now look forward to the days getting longer and the nights getting shorter.

My holiday season will be quieter than normal at first and then likely not so quiet after that.  I am one of three CEF Board members travelling on December 27 to Cambodia, with the first stop in Phnom Penh (I was advised to carry ear plugs for this vibrant city). Leah Lockhart, CEF Communications Chair, Sue Dick, CEF Projects Chair, and I are travelling together and stopping in Phnom Penh for four days en route to Siem Reap to meet up with one of our great project partners, Kids International Development Society. We will be joined in Siem Reap by Michael Glogowsky, our San Francisco based Board member, and Steven Errico, a fabulous commercial photographer from Vancouver who has contributed his work to CEF for most of our nine years of operation.

We will be travelling with KIDS founders Adrianne and Rick Lennert for seven or eight days, viewing projects we have funded and reviewing others we may fund in the future. This is such a great opportunity for us to see firsthand as “CEF ambassadors” the changes your work and donations have wrought. As with our trips to Ethiopia and Zambia, we will be blogging from Cambodia and posting pictures. Watch the CEF blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for updates as we learn, explore, and celebrate.

Whatever your reason for celebration, thank you for being part of the CEF family this past year and for watching us grow and change. It has been a great year and one of many challenges and changes. And there is more to come as we move towards our 10 year anniversary. All the best.