More Than a Number

Khmer Refugee Transit Photo & Survival Story Collection

Honoring our heroic survivors

"More Than A Number" is a first-ever effort in the world - led by Light of Cambodian Children, Inc - to collect transit numbers, photographs and backgrounds of those individuals and families who were accepted for asylum in new countries.

The photos symbolize the moments in the refugees' lives when after a brutal and torturous time during the 1975-1979 genocide, and for many people a few years in filthy refugee camps and holding centers, the people could finally glimpse some hope for their future acceptance upon coming to a country such as the United States, France, Canada, or Australia. Ironically, although these transit photos were taken for the purpose of documenting refugees leaving the holding centers, the photos are also eeriely reminiscent of those gloomy and strange photos taken at Tuol Sleng Prison prior to the execution of roughly 21,000 women, children, and men.

"More Than a Number" was chosen as the title for this historic project as it captures succinctly the fact that the people shown in the photos were beyond resilient: They were extraordinary, dynamic human beings who had helped develop their own communities prior to the genocide, who survived using extreme means during the genocide and refugee experience, and who rose out of the ashes and made something of themselves and their children in their new lands. 

If you would like to submit your family's T-photo and survival story, please contact us today at info@reaksmey.org or 978.275.1822.  All photos collected will be compiled into a commemorative survivors photo book.

We currently wrapped up our first exhibit in Lowell, MA on July 25, 2010. Future exhibition location and dates will be posted.  Stay tuned.

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