By Meg Kennedy
Young Bacchus Marsh business owner Abbey Kick is trading salon clippers for shovels and school supplies.
The 24-year old recipient of the 2017 Ballan & District Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence ‘Young Achiever Award’, will lead a humanitarian tour of Cambodia and Laos this March—a two-week journey which includes volunteering at local schools, providing bikes for children, and aiding with water filtration in local villages.
The trip is a passion project for Ms Kick that has been years in the making.
After embarking on a Rotary International ‘World of Difference’ humanitarian tour of Cambodia in 2014, she wanted to continue making a difference, even after purchasing Amber Hair Studio in Main Street, Bacchus Marsh.
“…When I purchased my business, I was forced to step back from taking trips. Instead we have funded two children to be fed and schooled for the past three years, and funded maintenance of pipes for rain water harvesting,” she said.
“I was always planning to head back to the country and lead more tours with World of Difference, I just finally know it is the right time.”
As well as humanitarian work, the 12-day trip will include tours of ancient temples and ruins, visiting local markets, learning about spirituality and Buddhism, and witnessing a ‘march of the monks’ at sunrise.
On what she hopes attendees will take away from the trip, Ms Kick said she “really hopes the attendees walk away with a greater understanding of the world.”
“I really [want attendees] to appreciate how awesome our country and local community are…we have so many amazing opportunities [in Australia] that the Khmer and Laotian people would only dream of,” she said.
“It would be incredible if we could create life-long relationships with attendees, who will continue to visit, sponsor or even spread the word of our tour and organisation, which is our ultimate goal.”
The Cambodia and Laos trip will run from 16 March – 28 March 2019.
The total cost is $3,299, includes flights, twin-share accommodation, meals, travel insurance and transport.
If you’re interested in joining the trip, or for more information, contact Abbey at email@example.com.