Culture-Cross International Aid and Development
Culture-Cross travels the world every year in search of artisans who keep their traditions alive through their work. We meet directly with artists to source our jewelry, clothing and crafts. This gives us an opportunity to find unique handmade products but also to directly support the communities we work with around the world, preserving the traditional arts of communities. While we travel we also travel to meet with and support non-profit organizations working to improve the lives of communities around the world.
Nepal Earthquake Aid
April 2015- January 2017
In 2015 a disastrous earthquake hit Nepal and we immediately mobilized an aid package of $20,000 to help with the relief efforts. We worked with our network of artists in Nepal to rebuild schools in the Kathmandu valley, which are to some Nepali children their only source of food and shelter. We also contributed to the non-profit agency Nepal Youth Foundation which provided immediate relief to the most disaster stricken areas following the earthquake.
Improving the lives of Cambodian children and families through art
January 2017 - Today
In January 2017 we travelled to Cambodia to visit Phare Ponleu Selpak or “The Brightness of the Arts”, a non-profit Cambodian association improving the lives of children, young adults, and their families with art schools, educational programs, and social support programs.
Phare Ponleu Selpak, or just “Phare” was founded by a French humanitarian worker in a refugee camp after the Cambodian genocide who found that art classes worked as therapy by allowed the children to express through art the emotions that they couldn’t put into words.
Today Phare offers a wide curriculum of art education which provides the children in the surrounding Cambodian countryside with the skills to develop a career in the arts. Students graduating from Phare make an income in music, graphic and fine arts and by travelling the world to represent their new form of Cambodian performing arts. In a country where so much art was lost in the civil war and where so few opportunities exist, Phare creates opportunities for Cambodians to earn a living by contributing to the artistic development of Cambodia.
The music building at Phare Ponleu Selpak needs repairs due to foundation damage. Culture-Cross is now contributing 5% of total sales to Phare Ponleu Selpak to go directly towards the music building so that it continues to offer Cambodian students education to prepare them for careers in Cambodian music.
November 2020 Update!
This year we have finished construction of the Culture-Cross music pavilion so the children at the Phare school have a safe place to learn.
Cambodia and the Phare school have been immensely impacted by Coronavirus, and we are now dedicating our efforts to helping the school survive these difficult times. Our support of the Phare school is now focused on providing the children with adequate food, shelter and education.