My husband Charles was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Zambia so when we were in Cambodia this past August and met some PCVs at an Embassy function he enthusiastically donated copies of New Year Baby to their office. We didn’t know where they would end up, but we hoped that we could seed the countryside with this story. I just recently began getting word from from a few PCVs who have show the film in their classrooms.
“This topic is extremely difficult to approach, but because of the movie, my students were able to learn about their country’s history. So thank you for making the bridge that I have been seeking.” — Kealan Waldron, PCV
“I sat at the back of the English Lab classroom, attempting unobtrusiveness as these young Khmer teacher trainees viewed the film. From their body language and comments to each other, I noted that they vacillated between laughter and tears, surprise and disbelief!” – Darlene Grant, PCV
The PCVs also shared responses from the students in their elementary English. Many students expressed real shock about the depiction of killing in the film. Though they may have some references to the Khmer Rouge times from their parents, they have never been presented with a coherent history. Many were deeply touched by the film.
I’m so proud New Year Baby is still getting out there!