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Asian University hosts National Science Museum caravan

Riding for the Disabled

1,200 Sattahip students enjoy free lunch on Thai Navy Day

Royal Varuna Yacht Club: Anchors aweigh for charities

Asian University hosts National Science Museum caravan

Susan Joyce
At the opening ceremony on Wednesday November 25, first year students Durian and Nook introduced University President Dr. Viphandh Roengpithya who welcomed everyone.

First year students Durian and Nook introduce University President Dr. Viphandh Roengpithya.
Dr. Vip then invited the Deputy Mayor Wutisak Rermkitkarn to open the three day event. The science caravan visited Asian University from November 25 - 27.
Manop Isaree, director of the National Science Museum of Thailand, also spoke to the assembled guests, and encouraged the visiting pupils to enjoy their visit, and most importantly to realise that science can be fun.
The youngsters and teachers from many local schools went into the Asian University sports centre to enjoy the science fun, with staff from the NSM.
About 3,000 pupils from schools in the Chonburi and Rayong areas visited each day, and everyone at the University was pleased to welcome them to the campus.
Dr. Vip is hoping that this will become an annual event at Asian University.

Learning how to build using science.

What’s this do? It’s science, silly.

Young student learn by making sounds at the science caravan.

Riding for the Disabled

Able the Disabled volunteers needed

Sandra Cooper
RDA Thailand is a foundation that provides therapy riding for disabled children. The horse’s movement is therapeutic and improves the child’s balance/posture, co-ordination, concentration, self-esteem and muscle development.

A young disabled person holds on tight.
The horse’s movement in walk simulates the movement of the human walk. The warmth of the horse’s body and rhythmic gait relaxes spastic muscles and stimulates muscular development. Only very special horses, with quiet temperaments, unlimited patience and deeply giving natures, are suitable for this work.
RDA Thailand relies entirely on volunteers for its operation, and community support for its funding. There is a constant need for motivated, cheerful, and reliable people to help.
It is not necessary to know anything about horses or disabled children to make a big difference in the lives of these riders. RDA teaches its volunteers what they need to know in order to lead a pony or walk by the side of a rider.
The RDA classes are held at Horseshoe Point Tuesday and Thursday mornings.
RDA also welcomes other kinds of support. To make a donation, or discuss other ways to help, contact Sandra Cooper 086-848-3684.

Sally and the Horseshoe Point staff prepare
to take these youngsters for a horseback ride.

1,200 Sattahip students enjoy free lunch on Thai Navy Day

Rear Adm. Rerngrit Boonsongprasert, deputy commander of the Sattahip Naval Base, leads a group of sailors to Sattahip School to provide 1,200 free lunches.

Patcharapol Panrak
Eighteen Royal Thai Navy officers served a free lunch to 1,200 Sattahip school children to celebrate Thai Navy Day.

Thank you for this delicious food.
Rear Adm. Rerngrit Boonsongprasert, deputy commander of Sattahip Naval Base, led the delegation to Sattahip School Nov. 20. The facility educates children from kindergarten through sixth grade. Most of the students are children of Sattahip military personnel.
The children enjoyed steamed chicken and rice, noodle soup, fish maw soup, ice cream and milk. In addition, the Navy also donated 17,000 baht in cash to the school.
Rerngrit noted that Navy Day marks the founding of the first military academy under the rule of King Chulalongkorn in 1900.

Royal Varuna Yacht Club: Anchors aweigh for charities

Peter Cummins
Royal Varuna Yacht Club, for the second time this year, hosted a children’s outing, bringing disadvantaged children to the beautiful seaside at the club for a day’s fun, swimming, eating and generally enjoying the superb ambience.

Cool wind, relatively calm seas - perfect weather for the outing.
For many in this group, comprising some 100 children orphaned by the curse of HIV/AIDS which took away their parents, it was the first time to experience the beauty of the sea, feel the north-easterly monsoons on their faces and bodies and celebrate the exuberance of unfettered freedom - even for one day.
The lovely boys and girls from the House of Mercy Foundation’s (HOMF) Ban Meata Children’s Home for children living with HIV at Khon Kaen were very excited to be provided with this trip to the beach during the school holidays in October. The Royal Varuna Yacht Club generously hosted the programme, which enabled these children to enjoy the experience of a lifetime.

Look, I’m actually steering the boat!
Every March, for the past decade, Royal Varuna has hosted another children’s charity event. Sponsored by the Rotary Club of Bangkok South, when more than 400 children, truly afflicted, spend a day at the seaside. Blind, crippled and otherwise terribly disadvantaged, these young orphans enjoy a day of sunshine and joy - even the sightless - before returning to the grim halls of their Pakkred Orphanage.
One further charitable foray by the Kingdom’s oldest and most active yacht club has been the ongoing PC Classic yacht race which, under the tutelage of the Pattaya Mail has distributed millions of baht over the years to the most disadvantaged groups along the Eastern Seaboard.
A recent report by the Save the Children Fund: (UK), claims that “More than eight million children are living in orphanages/institutions, with most sent there by their parents because of poverty, rather than the death of one or both parents.”

Off we go!
“Not so at Ban Meata,” say Wendy Lewis, Mark Ellwood and Dave Littlejohn, ardent supporters of the HOMF. Presently there are some 130 underprivileged and/or orphaned children living in HOMF children’s homes at Khon Kaen, Phetchabun and Phrae.
But, back to the most recent outing, children from the Ban Meata Children’s Home in Khon Kaen are cared for by the House of Mercy Foundation which contributes to give them life, hope and a future; and helps them reach their highest potential.
Ban Meata (literally translated as “Mercy House”) in Khon Kaen is currently home for 39 children between 6 and 17 years of age who are all living with HIV or AIDS. These children have lost one or both parents, but all attend school daily, and are full of enthusiasm for life! They all live in a safe, caring environment where they receive good food, medical care and lots of love.

Learning the ropes out at sea.
During their stay at Royal Varuna and Jomtien, the children enjoyed a wonderful programme of activities including a trip to Koh Samet and Underwater World.
These experiences are a “first” for these children who come from backgrounds of poverty, rejection and from lives ravaged by HIV/AIDS. Ban Meata in Khon Kaen is in need of continued support as it seeks to relocate in the next couple of years. The current building is leased and before its expiry they hope to purchase land within easy reach of schools and hospital and build a village type facility with cottages for children and live-in carers.

This is a day everyone will remember.
There is also a vision for the development of work skills to give gainful employment for the children, some of whom are fast approaching adulthood and, because of their health history, will find it difficult to find meaningful jobs.
Individuals and organisations support HOMF by sponsoring children to provide for their care, taking out educational sponsorships, buying a child a breeding cow to build a wealth base for their future, providing food, and contributing to a number of projects that seek to provide high quality facilities and equipment for the benefit of these deserving children.

This is great fun!

English speakers will be able to access more information about House of Mercy Foundation on which will hopefully in the near future have a link to a Thai language site to enable Thai people learn more about how to help Thai children.
All further enquiries and offers of assistance should be addressed to the principles noted above and through the web-site.

Some of the youngsters out for a sail.

Decorating cookies with the kids.

We love cookies.

Eager children wait patiently for some ice cream.

It might be possible to have more fun, but we don’t know how.

Supporters of the HOMF, with some of their charges at the Varuna outing.

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