So you’ve just volunteered to build a chicken coop?

What is it that would possess 8 blokes to give up two weeks of their holidays, pay for flights to Cambodia, stay in cheap accommodation, spend 14 hours sitting in an overcrowded mini bus being hurtled across the largely unmade roads and head off into the bowels of the Cambodian countryside in order to build, amongst other things, a chook shed?

Oh, did I mention that for the joy of this journey they all put in to buy the building materials and tools for the construction of this chook shed, got to sleep in an old raised timber hut (with no power or water) in the village on a thin foam mattress with their only luxury, if one can call it that, being a mosquito net?

Meet brothers Rob and Tad Hendry and their band of merry volunteers, who in November 2015 did just that.

Rob and Tad are Directors and Founders of Bryn’s School and, along with a group of six volunteers, have just returned from a two-week stint volunteering their time, money and labour working in the village of Klic in Northern Cambodia.

Each year since the school was built, a team headed by members of the Hendry family has traveled to Klic to undertake these important works and provide help via such things as new uniforms and books for all students each year.

Conditions are tough, the blokes were up each morning at sun rise

(about 5:30AM), breakfast (some fruit, bread and a cup of tea) then labouring all day, shower (bucket of cold water) dinner and then back to bed.

Why? Why would you do this? Perhaps this can best be summed up by one of the youngest volunteers, 19-year-old Jarrod Donohue from Wonthaggi.

“The Cambodia trip sounded like such a great opportunity to help those who are less fortunate. It was great to be part of such a worthwhile cause. It felt great knowing I was making a difference.

And also some insight from one of the older volunteers, Stephen Edwards from Sydney.

“We have always given generously to charities but I have never had the chance to give some of my time to a good cause.

It turned out to be a great adventure and I was pleased that at 68 I could still put in a full day’s work and ‘pull my weight’.

I enjoyed the trips there and back, the living conditions were fine and I believe that we collectively achieved a lot for that small community.”

A chicken house to be proud of and it should provide an excellent commercial enterprise for the school.

Bryn’s School does indeed give hope through education and is a leader in “Children charities”

Janine Hendry

Bryn’s School

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