Factory life. It is a common destiny for many young Cambodian women, and some men as well. They move to the cities and take a job to help support their families, often rather than completing high school. Usually this means living in crowded and unsafe slum-like conditions, where they are subject to further dangers of being trafficked.
As you know, the majority of MMC patients are referred by our Referring Partners: Khmer churches, and Christian organizations who are engaged in church planting as well as development work. Outland Denim is one of those partners. With two small factories in Phnom Penh and Kampong Cham, they are focused on sustainable development. They offer fair wages and conditions, and especially, safety. As partners, we at MMC are able to come along-side them, offering healthy opportunities for these young workers physically, spiritually and emotionally.
Unlike some factories which are being shut down due to Covid 19 restrictions based on crowded working conditions, Outland Denim has been able to make needed adjustments and continue providing employment for 98 women.
Recently, a small team of Khmer Christian doctors and nurses from MMC visited the Phnom Penh factory for a women’s health outreach. They enjoyed meeting the girls in small groups and teaching them about women’s health issues, including cervical cancer prevention. That same day, the MMC team screened many of the workers, with a simple but life-saving test.
Dr. Reaksmey reported, “the women were so thankful and happy that we cared about them enough to teach them and do the screening. And the factory staff has invited us back, saying we are free to bring more workers and to share our faith! We praise God for this opportunity and our partnership!”
“Outland Denim exists to eliminate exploitation and welcomes employees from backgrounds of injustice. Through training, healthcare, living wages, and education, they are living free for the first time.”- Outland Denim website