Welcome to the school big-hearted Shaun built

Shaun Prest pictured in the Painting Smiles school, Cambodia
Shaun Prest pictured in the Painting Smiles school, Cambodia

A FUND-RAISER with a heart of gold has returned to Halifax to raise more money for the Cambodian orphanage he set up.

Shaun Prest, from Siddal,hit the headlines when he filled suitcases with colouring books and crayons and set off for Cambodia.

He returned from the country last month where he has built a school in Sihanoukville, Cambodia

After various problems with land ownership, his home for 35 to 45 children has now grown to house 212 needy children.

Shaun appealed to the head monk at the Otres Chas Pagoda to help him find land to build, using pidgin English.

He was delighted when they provided a piece of land within reach of local villages so they can all send their children.

Shaun recalls: “The head monk sat up and, like the man from Del Monte, he just said yes,” said Shuan.

But his work is not yet done. “I need another classroom, minibus and another school,” said Shaun, who turned 40 during his latest trip.

“English schooling is so important to these children and can help in the future to get them out of poverty.”

He will now start his fund-raising challenge again with his daughter Abigail, 11, for company. The pair will start selling goods at car boot sales as well as other events.

“I first went out to see a friend about six years ago but I just carried on going,” he said. “It’s just what I want to do.

“I get as much out of it as I put in and love doing what I do,” he said.

Contact Shaun on 07904 036069 if you would like to donate money.w