Projects : Common Grounds

 Visit Common Grounds Website





Review by lonely planet magazine

“Common Grounds is not only about freshly brewed coffee, a selection of  pastries and tasty sandwiches as well as delicious soups of the day – it’s also about people. You don’t have to be a socially responsible traveller to enjoy a freshly brewed cappuccino, a grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup combo or some of the local Khmer dishes, but the team at Common Grounds also aim to promote ‘micro-enterprise development’, giving locals a working chance and create income that helps to sustain the Children’s Home in Siem Reap.

Common Grounds serves as a vocational training center, teaching English and computer skills and provides housing for long and short-term volunteers and staff..  If you bring your own laptop, there is also free wireless Internet and, as a whole, we believe Common Grounds is a good choice whether you’re looking for a healthy breakfast, lunch or dinner.”          Lonely Planet Magazine

The idea behind Common Grounds Coffee Shop is very simple–provide a place where common ground can be discovered and relationships made. The other impetus was to give the poor a working chance. Sixteen young Khmer adults receive employment and training. Most receive job opportunities that would have never been available to them anywhere else. Many have also been blessed to receive scholarships for further education. A great example is Dalath, who we hired four years ago. He didn’t finish 10th grade and had no hope for a bright future. He is now the manager and doing a fantastic job. He is also slotted to be a recipient of a scholarship in 2012.
Common Grounds Coffee House and Training Center in Siem Reap, Cambodia is People for Care and Learning’s primary base of innovative assistance, providing micro-enterprise development and vocational training.

This four-story state-of-the-art facility serves several purposes:

  • to promote “micro-enterprise” development
  • to provide jobs (giving the locals a “working chance”)
  • to create income that helps to sustain the Children’s Home in Siem Reap, Cambodia
  • to serve as a Vocational Training Center, teaching English and computer skills
  • to provide housing for long and short-term volunteers and staff
  • we also offer FREE Wi-fi to locals and tourists

The mission here is two-fold: provide quality education primarily in terms of language that is accessible to Khmer young adults and create a sense of community with our students. Currently we are teaching 100 students several levels of English instruction for a 10 week cycle. We offer 12 units of English training divided by Intro, Intermediate, and Advanced. Within each category there are 4 distinct classes/levels creating a 12 unit curriculum. We have also offered computer classes and financial literacy courses. To foster community, we provide various group activities and community service activities.

Common Grounds Learning Center

The Common Grounds Learning Center is a practical means of inspiring hope and empowering potential in Siem Reap, Cambodia. We are able to give our students a realistic way of bettering their lives by teaching skills that are important for their job market. In providing such skills we are able to build relationships with students, encouraging them to reach their full potential in class as well as in life. This community atmosphere fosters a safe and effective learning environment in which students can explore new possibilities. The Common Grounds Learning Center is able to expand students’ worldviews through exposure and field trips to our projects around the Siem Reap area and activities with short-term teams from other countries. All of this is offered at an affordable rate so that the Learning Center can work toward being self-sustainable while extending a helping hand to those who wish to work towards a brighter future.

Common Grounds Cafe & Land Mine Victims Carving Shop from People for Care & Learning on Vimeo by CBS Producer, Zsolt Luka.