Project Cheway is an Overseas Service Learning Project (OSLP) under Chemical Engineering Student Society (ChESS). Every year, we organize trips to different locations in Philippines but this year, we partnered with Hemispheres Foundation and travelled to Kampong Speu, a province in Cambodia. Unlike previous Cheway OSLP trips that focused on building water renewal systems, our main goal for Cheway’17 was to build a biodigester cum toilet in a rural village that consists of villagers that were displaced from the city. This project also had an education component, aiming to help local children. This project had 24 NUS students as participants, started on May 19, 2017, and ended on May 31, 2017.

For Cheway’18, we are currently looking for potential Project Directors (PD/VPD) to head the next expedition. To express interest, do drop an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or message +65 9725 5742.

Biodigester/Toilet Component

" Over at the village, the 12 days spent under the blazing hot sun at the biodigester site and teaching at the school was physically and mentally taxing. The company of our fellow volunteers and the friendliness of the villagers made all the work worthwhile. Having lived my whole life in a city state, it was a humbling experience to experience what it is like to live in rural area. All in all, I am thankful for the friendships forged during this trip as well as those who contributed to the success of our project."

-     Lee Jun Jie

 " Project Cheway has been a learning experience for me. It not only gave me an opportunity to play a part in contributing back to the community but also allowed me to grow as a person.

During the trip, I learned that the kids come to this school willingly as a supplementary education and from seeing how enthusiastic the kids were in learning English, the stark contrast between our attitude in learning became apparent to me. While I taught them English, they have unknowingly taught me to seek and receive knowledge enthusiastically.

Building the biodigester was tough initially as we were not sure of what to expect and there were a few times when our efforts were put to waste due to the rain. Despite the difficulties we faced, we did not give up but continued to give our best. As cliché as it sounds, I now understand the meaning of the quote “Teamwork divides the task and multiplies the success”. It was only with every member’s determination could we then complete the construction of the biodigester and toilet. By the time it was done, it felt satisfying and heart-warming to see that our hard work has helped to play a part in making Mr Khorn’s life better.

This trip has changed my perspectives on many things and realised that material possessions does not necessarily bring happiness. Project Cheway made me see that true happiness comes when we gain by having less. I am thankful for this opportunity to be part of Project Cheway’17."

-     Lim Sher Min 

Digging a hole that is 4 by 2 meters deep. Digging a hole that is 4 by 2 meters deep.
 Digging a hole that is 4 by 2 meters deep.
Laying of bricks and cement to build the biodigestor. Building of toilet that is linked to the biodigestor.
Laying of bricks and cement to build the biodigester. Building of toilet that is linked to the biodigester.
Our benefactor, Mr Khorn, cooking lunch with the use of firewood under a temporary hut Mr Khorn standing on the biodigestor with the toilet in the background
The picture on the left shows our benefactor, Mr Khorn, cooking lunch with the use of firewood under a temporary hut and on the right, where he is standing on the biodigester with the toilet in the background.

Education Component

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" Honestly, before this experience I've always prided myself to be good with kids and be able to win them over with my enthusiasm. However, I was greeted with an unexpected obstacle, having a language barrier with the little kids. I was at a lost, how to effectively reach out to these kids when some didn't even know a simple hello. I was extremely nervous on my first lesson, the kids looked disinterested and I was disheartened. Thankfully, my partner Dapito and I decided to approach them with loud and high pitched greetings, to show them we were interested and that we had something to offer. Throughout this teaching experience I gained the invaluable sense of what touch and genuine affection could do, it transcended the barriers of language. A simple hug and a hand grab brought a big smile to them and just seeing their warm smiles was the best takeaway from my teaching experience."

-     Melissa Lim


Team Photo

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