The Messenger Band is a grassroots advocacy group that uses the power of song to lobby for positive change in response to violence, exploitation and human abuse in Cambodia.

Read our interview here. អាន សំភាសន៍ នៅទីនេះ។

The Messenger Band at their 10th Anniversary celebration, September 4, 2015. Photo courtesy of The Messenger Band.

The Messenger Band at their 10th Anniversary celebration, September 4, 2015. Photo courtesy of The Messenger Band.

1.     Chres Chnoul Chrum Village is near by the village of Kor and Ta Hgov;

Many years ago it was left behind with only problems; we can farm only one time per year; how can we live? The rainy season comes, but there is no rain.

2.     Both uncles and aunts resist in hardship; the children are unable to go to school; their stomachs are hungry so they cannot study; mothers owe double debt due to loan interests; how can we live when all the services are really expensive?

(Refrain) We’ve had to leave as mothers to be employed as household servants, or construction and garment workers; we have no alternative choice for our families; we’ve lost our land but the loan interests still remain; even if we work hard we cannot do anything about it.

3.     With low salaries how can we survive? The cost of goods never declines, prices only increase. This is neo-liberalization. It confuses us to see the bad as good. 

1.     This is my life story; away from home because of my family’s living situation. Homeless and landless; parents also divorced; I’ve become so lonely.

2.     What can I rely on? Landless and living in startcation; forcing my to become a garment factory worker; bad reputation; the owner committed inhumanity and continues to exploit his workers.

(refrain) Oh! It’s so tragic, my fate; the rented room was burned; my whole body, skin, veins, arms and legs were also putrid and seriously hurt.

3.     As the fire was bursting into flame, we and our friends swiftly rushed; screaming for help from the hospital; when the ambulance arrived they didn’t care about the hurt people; they first asked if we had money to pay; they didn’t care about our human lives.

(refrain) Because we are poor, garment workers; they didn’t care aboue us even dead or alive unless we could give them money. Oh! Human life is cheaper than money.

4. Because my friends wanted me to be alive; they tried hard to save me; unfortunately we can no longer meet each other; stop crying my friends; say goodbye forever.