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If on this Earth there are Angels
In April 1975 Addheka was a 14-year-old Cambodian girl who had only just learned to walk after being a polio victim as an infant. She was part of the forced evacuation from Phnom Penh of the entire population of the city and trudged to an unknown future with her large extended family.
Her beloved father, who produced two other families, altogether looked after 24 children and three wives. The families were soon scattered far and wide and lost touch with each other. The brutal, apocalyptic reality of the Pol Pot regime soon hit home, with devastating consequences for her family.
For much of the next four years Addheka was alone, surviving unusual hardship and witnessing the fanatical, irrational, murderous reality of the Khmer Rouge regime. When it all ended, Addheka eventually returned to Phnom Penh to find out which of her family members had survived.
She remained in Cambodia and became part of the reconstruction effort, working in a major hospital, then becoming a language teacher and Principal. She underwent a spiritual renewal and today runs the Aid Projects of Mercy for the very poorest children in Cambodia.
Addheka lives in Phnom Penh with her sister. She is the Principal of the Khmer School of Language and continues to work to improve the lives of poor Cambodian families and children through the Aid Projects of Mercy.
Listen here to an edited version of an interview with Addehka.