Child Garbage Collector Grows Up To Become Valedictorian With Full Scholarship

Sophy Ron, a woman now graduating as valedictorian of her class at Trinity College and on her way to a full ride at the University of Melbourne, actually started her life working at the Phnom Penh dump. At just 11 years old she would be working 7 days a week at the Stung Meanchey Municipal Waste Dump just to help support her family. She would wade through ‘noxious trash’ just to pick through it and survived on leftovers she would find in the filth.

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Photos Courtesy of CCF

Fortunately, she was soon taken on by the Cambodian Children’s Fund (CCF), a nonprofit organization geared towards transforming the “most impoverished kids into tomorrow’s leaders.” Sophy was actually one of the first beneficiaries of the organization and began her schooling at the age of 11. She was also the first CCF student to be granted a full scholarship to firstly, Trinity College, and now the University of Melbourne.

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As valedictorian, Sophy was tasked with giving the final address to her class at their graduation ceremony. The Cambodian Children’s Fund was especially proud of her self-assured delivery, calling her “a confident and articulate young woman on the verge of the next chapter of her life.” On her part, Sophy was “very excited but very nervous.”

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Photo Courtesy of CCF

It’s important to note that stories like these show that each and every child has the potential to do good and be successful in this world. We only have to extend that opportunity to make it equal and accessible for all.

Share your own inspirational stories with us in the comments!