Despite Salik’s success, concerns remain for welfare of Cambodian children working in tourism

The viral story of Thuch Salik, the talented multi-lingual boy selling souvenirs around Angkor Wat, has thrown the spotlight on the plight of working children in the province and across the country.

The sun is dropping below the horizon, leaving burnt streaks in the sky, as the boats return.

Each vessel chugs back to shore carrying troops of international tourists, faces tinged pink in the heat, legs unsteady from two hours on the water.

As they disembark, a young boy – sometimes two – stands by the exit ramp with hands outstretched. The occasional tourist drops candy in his palm, but hard cash is what the children are after.

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