Mr Sokha, the exception at Soieries

Today, we decided to tell you about Mr SOKHA, one of the only men working in the Soieries du Mékong workshop in Banteay Chhmar.

Echarpe après écharpe, son implication reste sans faille

A life, a story...

Mr Sokha was born in 1954 in Battambang, in western Cambodia. He married in 1978 while Cambodia was still in the middle of a civil war under the communist regime of the Khmer Rouge, a war which ended the following year in 1979.

Traditionally at the time and even still sometimes today, marriages are arranged by the parents of the future groom, who choose a wife for him. Mr Sokha's parents themselves chose his future wife whom he only meets on his wedding day.  

Today, he is the parent of four children. His two sons joined the army and became soldiers in the “Cambodian Army”. One of her daughters moved to Thailand to join her husband who works there. The second came to work for a few weeks at Soieries du Mékong.

Concentré sur son travail, il ne laisse rien passer

A professional journey full of twists and turns…

Mr Sokha has a rather astonishing professional background. After training as an electrician, obtained before the Khmer Rouge regime, he turned to the agricultural sector. He then worked in the cultivation of cassava and rice before joining Soieries du Mékong.

At the heart of this world of weaving, Mr Sokha today occupies a very versatile position. He is both responsible for preparing the looms and repairs relating to the electrical installation.

He mainly takes care of winding, a key step before weaving which consists of winding the silk threads on spools. Mr Sokha works on the improvement and efficiency of winding machines to make them more efficient.

He listens to weavers to understand the difficulties they encounter and seeks solutions to their problems by creating new instruments. For example, he built new winding machines adapted to the size and thickness of our different silk threads.

 A balance between professional and personal life…

Mr Sokha chose to work at Soieries du Mékong for several reasons. Through his job and the missions entrusted to him, he can combine his interest in manual work and solving concrete problems.

This empowering position offers him freedom of initiative in his workplace while having more free time than in his previous job. He can therefore take the time to relax and take care of his wife and grandchildren outside of his working hours.

Mr Sokha would describe himself in three points:

Firstly, his pragmatism, which is reflected in his work through the technical and concrete missions he carries out.

Then, his ingenuity, which pushes him to research and develop innovations that improve the daily work of women at Soieries du Mékong.

Finally, Mr Sokha is a patient person, both in his work and in his personal life. In his free time, he enjoys listening to the music of his favorite artist, Sin Sisamuth. Her songs are poetic and full of meaning, like “Flower of Krouchess” which speaks of a young girl and the view from her window in the provinces.

A respectful and grateful man...

Education occupies a very important place in Mr Sokha’s life, both for him and for his children. He is a man grateful for the chance he has to have had access to school. He tells us that the people he respects the most around him are his parents and his teachers, some for having given him birth and others for having brought him knowledge. He dreams that his children, following the education they received, will prosper in their lives by developing their own businesses, for example.

 His expertise, his ingenuity and his delicacy make Mr Sokha a key person in the successful production of Soieries du Mékong scarves.

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