Jeeven Nadanakumar (front, centre) was part of a World Vision Australia youth group visit to Cambodia. Photo: supplied.

Jeeven Nadanakumar (front, centre) was part of a World Vision Australia youth group visit to Cambodia. Photo: supplied.

Travel journal: Cambodia

Undergraduate law and economics student JEEVEN NADANAKUMAR discovers hardships and hope in Cambodia as a World Vision Australia youth representative.

From the window of the plane, I was mesmerised by the lush green land sprawling before me, littered with countless rivers twirling like ribbons.

From afar, it was hard to tell that decades ago the same land and water was stained with the blood of millions of innocent people slaughtered mercilessly by the Khmer Rouge.

Cambodia has endured many tough decades.

Pol Pot's rule is long gone but its legacy remains.

Poverty impacts many locals; the country's people have an average income of US$2.60 a day - a fifth of Thailand's figure.

Poverty has a home in urban shantytowns and city slums right around the world.

Suddenly I saw it in the flesh. I visited families living on a dumpsite.

Muddy, smelly, filthy. Makeshift homes built on top of the rubbish and animals scavenging around, competing for food.