I became a teacher because I want to share my passion and love for science with children. I want to pass on the spark of inspiration that my teachers from childhood had given me. I hope that my kids feel a sense of wonder and ask a million questions. I also want my students to be kind and generous to each other, and to value the opinions and hopes and thoughts of other humans.

By that same token, I'm always looking for opportunities to grow as a person, as an educator, and as a wife and mother. Through luck, through fate, or whatever else you might call it, I have found an adventure that will give me the opportunity to learn about myself and give back to a needy community. I'm going to Cambodia! 

An Adventure In Cambodia Awaits! 

Yes, you read that correctly. I'm going to Cambodia, and I want to invite you along. Cambodia has a long history, going back to at least the 5th millennium BC. The past hundred years have been turbulent for the citizens of this beautiful little country. War, factional fighting, political corruption and extreme poverty have profoundly impacted daily life for ordinary citizens. 

You will witness what authoritarian dictatorship can do to a country and its people. Cambodians face poverty, endemic government corruption, and chronically malnourished children. A third of the population have to survive on less than one dollar per day. 

So why am I going here? I'm going to make a difference. I'm going to learn about this beautiful country and its culture. I want to meet people and hopefully improve their lives. And most of all, I want my students to see my example and DO more, not just talk about it. 

This journey isn't just for teachers, however. It's for anyone interested in the cutting edge world of brain-based leadership. It's for anyone who wants to be hands-on in the fight against some of the greatest injustices in the world.

You can expect to see business leaders, coaches, consultants, teachers, and professionals from all walks of life. But remember, we aren't just going as tourists and sight-seers. We will be building homes for needy families and learning about yourself in the process!

The About my Brain Institute has partnered with RAW Impact for the 2017 i4 Live Retreata 7 day program conducted by highly experienced facilitators that covers the latest research in neuroscience and leadership.

The practical aspect of the retreat will be to build bamboo houses to improve the living conditions for local men, women, and children, which will have a direct impact on helping prevent debt slavery and human trafficking.

When children’s basic needs are met, like having food and a safe home, they can focus on school, and just being children. RAW Impact isn’t just helping the community by building houses, they are supporting education.

The SALT School teaches children Khmer, English, and Mathematics. The school, in partnership with the RAW Educate team, now employs 7 teachers, has 207 children enrolled, and provides 1,035 meals for kids at school every week.


And it doesn’t stop there. The SEAL program, which stands for Spelling, English, and Literacy, is finding ways to engage children and help them learn in fun and creative ways. Offering children an opportunity to learn English will give them a leg up on life, and help provide job opportunities as they grow into adulthood.

RAW Impact is working hard to provide communities in need with housing and education opportunities. Children are the world’s greatest resource, and as human beings, it is our duty to love, care for, and educate the future leaders and citizens of tomorrow. Won’t you consider giving a helping hand?

Don’t just talk the talk, but walk the walk! Share this message of hope and generosity with your students, or coworkers, or anyone in your life.

No one has ever become poorer by giving.
Anne Frank

No matter your role in life, we can all benefit from generosity. Will you consider joining me in Cambodia?

Remember, being generous doesn't always mean giving your money. It means giving a part of yourself. The generous gift of your time and efforts will forever affect the families that you help, and this spark of generosity can be spread to others.

When you come home from this trip, you will be a different person.
I hope to see you there!

Originally posted on: 20 April 2017
Last updated on: 12 April 2024
Silvia Damiano

Silvia Damiano

Founder & CEO
About my Brain Institute

Scientist, educator, author, speaker, coach, award-winning leadership specialist, filmmaker and creator of the i4 Neuroleader Model & Methodology.

Silvia's scientific background and curiosity about the human brain led her to a decade long journey of research into optimal brain functioning and the application of neuroscience in leadership and daily life. Her past and current roles have uniquely prepared her for the current undertaking, that of leadership activist & change agent.

Silvia Damiano founded The About my Brain Institute in 2009, with the purpose of democratising leadership & neuroscience. She has a passionately held belief, that leaders in our 21st century global economy and their organisations must radically change long-held ideas of what constitutes effective leadership

In her ground-breaking books ‘Leadership is Upside Down’, ‘Brain-Friendly Leadership’ and the 2018 documentary ‘Make Me A Leader’, Silvia provides both compelling evidence and explores the importance of leadership in our personal and professional lives and what it takes to develop the human behind the leader.

Silvia has worked in different countries, across many industries, helping teams and organisations improve business performance. Silvia’s clients have described her as a passionate, dynamic, a highly experienced speaker and master facilitator on the topics of Emotional Intelligence, Cultural Change, Neuroleadership & Engagement.

Silvia is passionate about leaving a legacy of well-rounded leaders who can act and decide in a way that better serves humanity. Her clients include Microsoft, Australian Stock Exchange, NSW Government, VISA, Fuji Xerox and Manpower amongst many other global companies.

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