Thuch Salik, a 14-year-old Khmer street vendor, went viral a few months ago for his proficiency in languages. A tourist he approached had taken a video of him convincing her to buy his wares — in several different languages. He claimed he could speak Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, French, German, Thai, Malay, and Filipino amongst other languages.
And he did!
The tourist and Salik went back and forth over the souvenirs, switching codes from Mandarin to Filipino. He even belts out a song in Chinese at one point:
Thanks to his quickly-grown internet fame, Salik soon caught the attention of a Cambodian businessman who was interested in his personal development. Khit Chhern generously decided to sponsor Salik’s education abroad. Salik is set to attend the Hailiang Foreign Language School in Zhejiang province, China in hopes of further honing his skills.
Chhern made a Facebook post last May 12 bidding goodbye to the prodigy, wishing him luck and success in this grand opportunity. He also talked about how seeing the viral news of Salik moved him enough to reach out and offer the boy some help.
Beyond everything else, this story should serve as a reminder that everyone has the potential for success and that everyone ought to have the means to reach it. This means people should be given equal opportunity to learn and to live — to have access to quality education and a realistic means of living. And this can be brought about by both State and private incentive.
What do you think can be done to see more success stories like this?