Students Rebuild Award Winner Ley Savorn

Posted on September 16, 2013, by Half the Sky Movement

Ley Savorn is a 28-year-old from Battambang province in Cambodia and one of five young women who recently won the Students Rebuild Award. Ley and the other women from Somaliland, India, Kenya and Sierra Leone each received $10,000 to continue helping women and girls in their communities.

She is currently the chairperson of her community’s agricultural initiative "Poleu Strey,” which in English means “women’s light.” The Heifer International cooperative includes 120 families with $3,000 to use in a revolving credit fund. The cooperative uses this money to fund income generating activities, and she plans use the prize money to expand the products sold at the shop to include fertilizer, seedlings, animal feed and agricultural equipment.

In addition to her work as chairperson of the cooperative, Ley previously provided training for women on financial management, domestic abuse, women’s rights, self-help group management and Heifer’s 12 Cornerstones for Just and Sustainable Development. Her responsibilities included training 27 self-help groups, including 597 families, and establishing rules on spending and saving. In addition to setting up budgets, she has had to facilitate solutions to domestic violence cases, aided in emergency births, helped prepare families for threatening storms, and assisted widows establish small businesses.


“What I want to see from my work is people in my community live harmoniously with dignity, have food security for the whole year, share their own resources to support lonely elders, liberate victimized women from domestic violence and assist women and children to live in dignity and prosperity,” says Ley.

Read more about Ley and her work with Heifer international here and watch Ley discuss her plans. Check out this spotlight on Linda Kamau, the winner from Kenya. Look at this spotlight on Nimco Cabdillah, the winner from Somaliland. Stay tuned for more stories about our other Students Rebuild Award winners.

The Students Rebuild Awards featuring Half the Sky Movement recognized and celebrated five young women working to end the oppression of women and girls in their communities. Through a $10,000 prize ($50,000 total), these awards elevated the game changers who often go unrecognized, fighting bravely to improve life conditions for their peers. Learn more at