Thursday, November 15, 2007

Doug’s in town

The author (left) and Doug at The Rising Sun last night
Not a new restaurant last night, but a new pal, fireman’s friend Doug Mendel. I’ve blogged Doug’s efforts a few times in the past as his sterling work on behalf of the fire-crews throughout Cambodia deserves praise and support. A former fireman himself, Doug, through a combination of tenacity and sheer hard foot-slogging, has provided no less than two fully-functional fire-trucks to two fire stations, in Sihanoukville and last week, to Ratanakiri. He’s also supplied boxes and boxes of equipment to those and other fire stations around the country. The man simply never stops. He raises funds by returning from his Cambodia trips laden with purses, scarves and other items which he then sells in the United States to raise more funds for even more fire equipment and disadvantaged children. He’s now thinking of raising the money to give Phnom Penh a new fire station. Tomorrow there’s a ceremony at the Royal Palace where Doug will hand over some much-needed equipment to the Palace’s fire-crew, and another one on Saturday, at the capital’s current fire station. He deserves all the plaudits he gets, this is a man who devotes his spare time and energy to making a difference. If the world was full of Doug Mendel’s, the world would be a far better place.
I had a drink and some good old English grub with Doug at one of my favourite watering-holes, The Rising Sun on Street 178, served as usual by the effervescent Samnang. Cambodia’s fire-crews are poorly trained, inadequately equipped and paid a pittance, so I can’t speak highly enough of Doug’s tremendous work to give those fire-crews some of the essential tools of their trade. If you want to find out more about his relief fund, go to his website.

1 comment:

Wanna said...

I appreciate his efforts so much.
You're right, if the world was full of Doug Mendel’s, the world would be a far better place! I wish I could be the next Doug Mendel, too :)