News Release

Independent Journalism Foundation donates more than 500 books and other training materials to Club of Cambodian Journalists

PHNOM PENH, 01 September: The Independent Journalism Foundation (IJF) announced Wednesday that it had donated more than 500 books and other training materials to the Club of Cambodian Journalists (CCJ) with the aim of sharing these educational resources with a wider audience. The donation coincides with major renovation work on Block B at the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP), where IJF has been based since 2002, training hundreds of journalists from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam over the past eight years.

“At the request of the university, we have temporarily vacated our office and classrooms while the building is being refurbished,” said Nancy Ward, the IJF managing director in New York. “We look forward to moving back when the renovations are completed in about three months. We have meanwhile decided to donate this valuable collection to CCJ in the hope that the largest possible number of Cambodian journalists will benefit by having more regular access to this information.”

IJF in Cambodia inherited most of the books from the Freedom Forum Library at the Center for Independent Journalism in Bratislava, the center IJF operated in Slovakia between 1993 and 2003 when it closed as the country prepared to join the European Union. The collection also includes materials used for training in Cambodia and books donated by the Asian Foundation.

The Bratislava Collection contains almost 200 books devoted to journalism, print media and writing and about 60 on related issues such as media ethics, freedom of the press and media law. It also contains 40 about books on broadcast media, 20 books on photojournalism and 40 books on communications including advertising and marketing. Among other works are about 40 dictionaries, atlases and other reference books, three sets of encyclopedias, more than 50 publications from regional organisations and about 70 books and manuals on computers. The remaining publications are mostly devoted to Cambodian topics or economic and financial issues. The collection also includes dozen of DVDs and videos that have been used for training journalists from Slovakia as well as Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.

“Since most professional Cambodian journalism trainers are either on the board of CCJ or regular members, we believe that the club is the most suitable permanent home for this collection, especially since many of our graduates are now CCJ members,” said Peter Starr, the IJF country representative in Cambodia. Mr. Starr also serves as advisor to CCJ which is by far the leading journalism association in Cambodia with some 200 active members from both domestic and international print, broadcast and online media.

“The donation will serve the interests of journalists. And this is part of our effort to professionalize Cambodia’s media. We welcome all journalists to use these valuable materials,” said Pen Samitthy, the president of the Club of Cambodian Journalists.
He added that the Club of Cambodian Journalists will run a library at its office where the journalists can use all books as their references.

For further information, please contact:

In English: Peter Starr (012-894-384, peterstarr@mac.com )
In Khmer: Nguon Serath, CCJ Office Manager (067-727-777, ccj@online.com.kh