The long-awaited internships began in December 2020. Despite the crisis in the tourism sector caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the high decrease in numbers of international tourists in Cambodia, 77 students have already finished their internship in a hospitality establishment (half of the intake). The second group of 77 students will soon begin their internships. Like every year, all students are strengthening their skills thanks to internships in prestigious establishments in Cambodia. The work-study training approach, which defines Sala Baï, is back on track.
Every year, 150 Sala Baï students complete two 2-month internships with our partner hospitality establishments. In 2020, students were unable to complete their internships because of the Cambodian national authorities’ order to close all schools in March 2020 as part of the health safety measures.
While international tourists are still unable to visit Cambodia, the tourism industry showed resilience and by adapting its services to local tourists. Local tourism has enabled several establishments to remain open and to welcome interns from Sala Baï.
Because of the current situation of the Cambodian tourism industry and to increase internship opportunities, students are doing their internships in several provinces across the country for the first time. Usually, the vast majority of them work in Siem Reap province.
This new development was made possible thanks to the hard work realized by the Sala Baï team whose members contacted many establishments in every province. New partnerships have been established with hotels and restaurants over the country: Navutu (Siem Reap), Wat Chocolate (Siem Reap), La Cabane (Siem Reap), Original Café (Siem Reap), The Wild (Siem Reap), FCC (Siem Reap), Treeline (Siem Reap), L’Annexe (Siem Reap), Park Hyatt (Siem Reap), Anantara (Siem Reap), Mama Shop (Siem Reap), Aloe Vera Spa (Siem Reap), Sofitel (Siem Reap), Templation (Siem Reap), Rambutan (Siem Reap), Mulberry (Siem Reap), Fumizen (Siem Reap), Koh Songsaa (Sihanoukville), Vintage Wine Bar Mezze (Battambang), Cabaret Vert (Battambang), Battambang Resort (Battambang), Rambutan (Phnom Penh), Relais de Chhlong (Kratié). Some students were lucky enough to realize their internship on the paradisiac island of Song Saa. It has reinforced Sala Baï notoriety.
These internships are a major step in the Sala Baï training program. They enable students to implement knowledge and skills that they acquired during their schooling and work in the training restaurant, hotel, and beauty therapy center. It is also the opportunity for them to use the soft skills they developed during workshops organized by the social workers and the NGO Possibilities World.
These internships are the result of Sala Baï’s resilience and hard work based on strong cooperation with the Cambodian tourism industry. The support provided by the school led to the development of tailor-made training courses (barista training, enology…) that improve the students’ training. Possibilities World strengthened its personal development program with workshops on professional integration to develop these new courses.