Between 16 and 21 of July 2013 I participated to “Rice4Kids 2013!”, organized by Chuay Dek. We visited Buddhakasettra school in Thailand.
“ChuayDek – Raising greener generations” is a small nonprofit organization aiming to improve the lives, level of education and environmental knowledge of children in selected schools in Thailand.
Robin Travels is financially supporting the school through ChuayDek.
The school Buddhakasettra was established by the Pra Chaiyot Chaiyayaso in 1986 to provide safe shelter and education to kids from one of the slums in the surrounding of Bangkok. The school subsequently welcomed children from hill tribes (Thai Yai, Akha, Karen, Lahu, Hmong), from divorced families or orphans and kids with drug problems, preventing them to become victim of criminals or human trafficking. In the last 20 years the school gradually transformed itself into a large welcoming center providing free education and hosting, in the years of high peak, up to 300 kids aged 4 to 18.
Meeting with the teachers an our arrival
Thoughts after the visit
Khun Yuam is a small rural village located north-west of Thailand (Mae Hong Son region). Children receive education, food and whatever the necessary to enjoy the school life.
The activities start early in the morning at 6 am and terminate at 8 pm in the evening. Classes include several subjects, such as math, Gym, reading and writing, history, agriculture, English, meditation, traditional arts and dances. Agriculture is an important subject which theory is well combined with its practice. During the 5 days visit we helped the children to cultivate their rice for the year. The school owns a land to grow rice. In this way the pupils can partially support themselves.
A regular day usually includes:
- 5 – 7.00 : wake up, shower, exercise & meditation breakfast and break
- 7.00 – 8.00 ceremony of the flag, and getting to the classes;
- 8 am classes start until 12.00;
- 12.00 – 13.00 lunch, cleaning and getting ready to carry on classes and other activities;
- 13.00 – 15.00 Innovative learning class;
- 15.00 – 16.00 gardening, farming, watering plant, cleaning school (depending on the task they have for that specific day);
- 16.00 – 18.00 play and rest;
- 18.00 – 19.00 dinner, cleaning, break;
- 19.00 – 20.00 prayers;
- 20.00 bed time.
The atmosphere is relaxed and the place is clean and tidy. I noticed a special care for discipline mixed with a quiet devotion to teaching.
The rural life is well combined with education and children are happy and motivated.
I think that this project is doing good and children are well prepared to the future challenge that lies ahead.
Ready to go: 4 hours left to the flight London – Bangkok (approximately 13 hours + 4 in a flight tranfer). This travel has multiple purposes. First a bit of mental relaxation. From January RT has reached some fruitful goals: the collaboration with Bema Hotel produced an estimable profit, same for Imperial Hotel. The collaboration with Living World Wide generated a new version of livingamsterdam.com and just a few days ago we finalized the brand new Artebay, contemporary art gallery (online) and started selling the first works of art (all original and signed) on ebay.
In addition to metal relaxation, I am planning to also draw something every morning on my brand new book. Life is movement, time also is movement and even if we try to a definition to our life (what we like, what we want, what we do…) once and for all, everything continuously changes and so far I’ve learnt that the most intimate motivations are anything but rational. So: one drawing book, colors and NO HURRY! Hopefully my hands will say something about the next steps.
And besides my emotional trips 🙂 I will visit Chuaydek, a project on board of Robin Travels from September 2010.
ChuayDek – Raising Greener Generations is a small non-profit initiative that aims at improving the lives, the level of education and environmental knowledge of children in selected schools in Thailand. All the work undertaken is fully and only on voluntary basis. Funds are collected through collaborative efforts and fully allocated to the identified school and kids.
Me and the staff of Chuaydek will leave Bangkok the 15th of July and reach Khun Yoam the day after, by bus (north of Thailand). We will spend 5 days visiting the children, the surrounding areas and doing rice planting. I couldn’t ask anything else.
Thanks for reading.