There is a mobile phone repair shop in Chi Phoch village called “Savorn, repairing all kinds of mobile phones”. My name is Chou Samoeurn, an ODOV staff member, and as I go into the shop I see a young man busy repairing a phone thoroughly and carefully. He has a nice smile on his face and looks very satisfied with his work. As he sees me entering the stall the young man greets me. 

This young man’s name is Oun Savorn, 23 years of age, and he lives in Chi Phoch village, Chi Phoch commune, Mesang district, Prey Veng province. Oun Savorn is the oldest child in his family, and has two younger brothers. He graduated from 12th grade in 2019 with a high school diploma. After graduating from general education, Oun Savorn did not continue his studies in college because his parents were poor and could not afford to cover the cost for Savorn’s education.

Oun Savorn heard about the Organization to Development Our Villages (ODOV) vocational training program through public promotions. He was interested in learning how to repair mobile phones and so contacted ODOV for more information, and eventually asked to register to participate in a phone repair course.

Oun Savorn was selected to participate in the training course on mobile phone repair. He enrolled in this training course on June 17, 2019 with a master craft teacher in charge of teaching him. As he started his training course, Savorn learned a lot and concentrated hard on his studies. He came to his training class regularly, and maintained good communication with both his teacher and ODOV staff. In addition to learning with his teacher, Savorn researched on the Internet, and studied through other programs on YouTube. Through his efforts and commitment, Savorn increased his knowledge and vocational skills on phone repair every day.

Along with learning mobile phone repair, Savorn has also received training from ODOV project staff on business management skills (calculating business expenses, calculating cost and selling prices, creating revenue, market research, business planning and simple record keeping) and other soft skills (customer service and communication, positive thinking, gender dynamics, etc.). These skills have been vital to motivate and encourage Savorn to continue learning and gain self-confident.  

After studying for 6 months, Oun Savorn developed a strong capacity to repair mobile phones and install various software program in mobile phones. Recognizing the ability and diligence of Savorn, his teacher hired Savorn for $300 per month to work in his mobile phone repair and sale shop. With the income he earned, Savorn allocated some money to support his family, while also saving some money for starting his own business in the future. As Savorn worked for his teacher, he gained more skills and experience including communication with customers, knowing the price of phones and other goods, recording income and expenses, etc. Savorn worked for his teacher about a year, and then decided to resign from his job in order to start his own business.

With support from ODOV project staff, Savorn developed his business plan. Savorn rented a shop near Mesang High School to start his own mobile phone repair and purchasing business in June 2022. He started his business with money from his savings and money he borrowed from relatives. Savorn operates his business by following his business plan diligently. He has proven to be very skilled at repairing mobile phones and has already provided quality services for his many customers. After operating his business for three months his business has grown significantly, he has received an increasing number of customers, and is successful and profitable.  

“I earn about $10-$15 profit from repairing each phone or installing various programs on phones. On average, I can make about $350-$400 profit per month. I am happy I have my own business that can make enough profit to support myself and my family.”       –  Oun Savorn

Savorn expects to continue gaining customers and growing his business in the future. He also expects to soon be able to buy his own location for a shop rather than continuing to rent property for his business. Savorn hopes to motivate and encourage other youth in the community who are not able to attend university to learn other vocational skills instead. He wants to help youth realize there are options for them to earn a living outside of getting involved in drugs or migrating elsewhere to find work. 

Savorn wants to express his gratitude to ODOV and the grant donor MCC for supporting him to learn this skill and enabling him to establish his own business where he can make a good living for himself and his family while supporting the community. 


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