Destination Asia is now working with ‘Cambolac’, a Cambodian company employing underprivileged young adults and the hearing impaired from Siem Reap’s poorest communities. The socially responsible business produces handicrafts and lacquer ware souvenirs, creating original designs at a workshop just five minutes from Pub Street in Siem Reap. The business is taking great steps in helping alleviate poverty in an area of Cambodia that receives overwhelming tourism numbers, yet remains one of the country’s poorest provinces.
On a visit to the lacquerware workshop, visitors are greeted by employees who welcome you inside and as they show around, will even teach some basic Khmer sign language. This helps when communicating with Cambolac’s deaf employees.
The workshop only produces handmade products and provides a unique insight to a carefully preserved cultural tradition. Starting with the wooden form, employees take great care in applying up to 10 layers of poly-cashew oil lacquer by hand brushing, before finely sand papering down for a product ready to sell.