There are as many as 5 million landmines remaining in Cambodia. Aki Ra laid landmines as a child soldier and now he as an adult, he clears them. He doesn’t know exactly how old he is. He’s somewhere between 44 and 41. His parents were killed by the Khmer Rouge, and a lot of his family history was lost.
He founded the Landmind Museum in Siem Reap, charging a dollar entry to see the landmines he had deactivated. Now that museum is a Siem Reap tourist attraction and also houses a relief centre where around 30 children live. Some of these kids were landmine victims, some are orphans, some have HIV and some have parents who were no longer able to care for them.
Aki Ra works for nothing, so that these kids and others like them can play in safety, without being blown to bits.
For the Australian equivalent of a pittance, we can help him out. Support Cambodian Self Help Demining. And if you’re in Cambodia, go say hi.
Care.org facts about landmines