High School Special volunteer collects a loan repayment from a beneficiary in Cambodia.

Micro-finance Internship in Cambodia for Teenagers

Support local entrepreneurs while learning about business and financial development with other teenagers

At a glance

  • Learn about the world of business from professionals and empower local entrepreneurs in Cambodia with other high school students.
  • Because of poverty and low incomes, many local families cannot reinvest in their business. Together with the Khemara organisation, you'll help us provide business training and interest-free loans to these families which will boost their businesses
  • You’ll live with the other volunteers in a hotel in the vibrant capital city of Phnom Penh and your supervisor will be by your side throughout your stay.

Start Dates: 

Fixed dates during school holidays

See Dates

Minimum Duration: 

Two Weeks

Requirements: 

This project is only for 15-18 year olds


Is a Micro-finance internship in Cambodia for teenagers right for me?

If your dream is to own your own business or work in business management, then our Micro-finance placement in Cambodia for teenagers is for you. You’ll gain practical experience as you learn about small scale business set up and financing in another country.

Along with other high school students, you’ll learn about micro-finance and work with interest-free loans and their beneficiaries. Micro-loans help empower communities and encourage entrepreneurs to grow their businesses. This is a great opportunity to develop your communication skills and add enhance your CV for future university applications.

You don’t need any prior experience to join as your project supervisor will be by your side every step of the way. They’ll provide you with all the training you need to deliver successful workshops and manage loan repayments.

This High School Special runs over a fixed two-week period during the summer holidays.

Projects Abroad volunteer visits a beneficiary who sells beverages in Cambodia.

The project runs all year round, you can start on any day, and it’s fully supervised. So all you need to do is decide on some dates, complete our application form with a £195 deposit and we’ll take care of the rest.


Your work will focus on the following areas:

Interview and screen potential loan beneficiaries

Before interest-free loans can be handed out to entrepreneurs, their business idea and plan needs to be as strong as possible. The better their preparation, the higher their chances of a successful business. You’ll get to sit in on the interview and selection process as candidates are chosen to receive loans. You’ll also be able to assist other entrepreneurs who require extra help developing and improving their business plans so they can qualify too.

Share business trainings with beneficiaries

Regular training sessions equip beneficiaries with the knowledge they need to successfully manage their business. Your project supervisor will provide you with all the necessary materials and resources needed to deliver informative workshops. You’ll cover various topics including:

  • Basic accounting practices
  • Customer service
  • Marketing
  • Project management

Monitor and support entrepreneurs with their businesses

Your work will extend beyond the handing out of loans. You’ll follow up with beneficiaries to see how their businesses are performing. By doing so, we’ll know which entrepreneurs need extra training or additional assistance when it comes to the management of their businesses. 

Learn about the history and culture of Cambodia through social and weekend activities

As a high school volunteer, we want you to experience more than just the business side of Cambodia. Your supervisor will take you to explore the country, including the magnificent Angkor Wat Temples and historical museums. You’ll learn more about the history of the country and sample the most fragrant dishes while making friends with other interns from around the world.

Our project partners in Cambodia

We partner with the Khemara NGO for several of our projects in Cambodia, including our Micro-finance placement.

Established in 1991, Khemara works directly with vulnerable communities tackling issues such as gender discrimination and poverty. Together, we provide interest-free loans to entrepreneurs looking to start their own businesses. We provide them with all the training they need to become successful and independent business owners.


Where in Cambodia will I work?

Phnom Penh

You and the other interns will be living in the vibrant capital city of Phnom Penh. Your project supervisor will accompany you each day to the office of our partner organisation in the northern part of the city.

When you aren’t assisting with business trainings or loan repayments, you’ll be taken around the city to explore. You’ll get to experience the buzz of the city, dive into history at local museums and sample some of the most fragrant dishes in Asia. You’ll also find yourself bartering at local markets and exploring the magnificent Angkor Wat Temples.

Airport pickup, flights and visas

When you arrive at your respective airport, a member of Projects Abroad staff will be there to meet you. You can find more detailed information on arrival airports, orientation, and visas on our Cambodia Arrival Procedures page.


What are the aims and impact of this project?

The main aim of our Micro-finance internship in Cambodia is to provide locals with the skills and resources necessary to start and develop their own small businesses. In turn, we’ll get to teach you more about the importance of micro-finance. We hope this will build your enthusiasm about the industry as you empower and watch local businesses grow.

Due to poverty and low incomes, many Cambodians are unable to set aside savings to grow their own businesses. By providing entrepreneurs with interest-free loans, they’re able to diversify their product offerings and grow their businesses. Many buy more stock and others purchase new equipment to speed up production. We’ve seen many food and drink sellers, tailors and salon owners thrive after receiving their loans and we’re eager for you to be a part of it

The project doesn’t just end there. We continue to train and develop the business skills of entrepreneurs. By doing so, they’ll learn how to better manage their business as well as how to market it to their target audience.

Ultimately, we aim to encourage and inspire business owners so that they can better support themselves and their families. By improving their stream of income, we can help reduce poverty, reduce inequality and improve economic growth in Cambodia.

Join us on the Micro-finance internship in Cambodia for teenagers and help encourage entrepreneurship by growing small businesses.

Local business owner sits by her stall and sells her products in Cambodia

Management plans

We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.


Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.


Measuring our impact

Every year, thousands of High School Special volunteers and interns actively make a difference around the world. During their time abroad, they contribute towards achieving long-term goals and make a long-lasting positive impact on the communities where they work.


We produce an annual High School Specials Impact Report, which documents some of these achievements. Find out more about the impact of these projects, and read the latest report.


Food and accommodation

You'll share accommodation with other Projects Abroad volunteers and interns during your stay in Phnom Penh. This is a great way to get to know your fellow volunteers and interns, share experiences, and explore your surroundings in your time together.


On our High School Specials, we will always try to have you share a room with at least one volunteer or intern of the same sex and approximate age. Your room will be modest, but comfortable, clean, and safe.


Your programme fees include three meals a day.


Find out more about our accommodation.


Safety and staff support

Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have all the extra support you need as a young person travelling abroad. Our Projects Abroad staff are there for you 24 hours a day during the week and over weekends to provide constant support and guidance. Our staff also make sure you feel comfortable and safe at your placement and accommodation. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.


Find out more about safety and backup.

When you apply you only pay $495, which comes off the total price. Flexible payment options and fundraising advice available.

Looking to do more than one project? Call us on 09 889 0587 to see if we can offer a discount.

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