Tuk Tuk Theatre is about children. Its about giving Cambodian kids dreams and challenging their imagination. To sum it up it is trying to give children back their childhood. And what childhood is complete without the big red fella dropping by once a year to give some presents. This year we made it our mission to show the kids a Christmas that they will never forget. First we educated them on clearing the confusion of Santa for kinder kids earlier in the week and then we planned the big arrival. With Santa, 10 elves and a Cambodian story teller we headed off in 2 tuk tuk’s to hit the local pre-schools.
Even after our education lesson earlier in the week, the kids were not really sure what was going on but were still excited about so many foreigners in their village dressed up in crazy costumes. We started out by having our Cambodian story teller, read a book for the kids about 2 little mice and their Christmas day. She them went on to challenge the kids with discovering what each item of Santa’s clothes were followed by asking the kids if they had been good for the year which we were assured that they had.
On a prearranged signal, Santa then bumped into the pre-school in the Tuk Tuk Theatre with bags of presents and cookies cut into Christmas shapes. The morning was a roaring success. We continued onto a local NGO run school to deliver presents to both primary and high school kids before going out to a local restaurant for Christmas lunch. We followed up with 2 more school visits in the afternoon followed by a final visit to a nearby village that evening. I over catered slightly on the presents and we spent an hour driving around Pursat, giving out presents to any kids we found on the street why jingle bells was playing loudly on repeat. By the end of the day we were all stuffed. Santa informed me that he will retire this year and asked if I could take over the following year. It sucks to be considered old enough to be Santa.
In total we gave out 1800 cookies and 700 presents to a huge amount of kids and some elves. The elf costumes were all hand made locally and will be used for years to come. A big thanks to all of the volunteers that helped and donated the money to make it happen.
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