Keeping several hundred children happy during the school holidays is not always an easy task. To prevent boredom setting in the children and teenagers living at the Father Ray Children’s Home, Children’s Village and the Drop-In Center got together and all went off to camp for several days.
They did not have to travel too far, they stayed on campus, but they did welcome several instructors from a local Scouting organization whose job was to keep everyone busy. The children, boys and girls, young and old, were divided into twelve teams and together they learned new skills, experienced new activities and worked together as a team.
Cooking was done in the open air over campfires. Unfortunately, several of the teenage boys, who obviously know more about survival than the experienced Scout leaders, decided that their camp fire would light quicker if they cut up a rubber bicycle inner tube and set it alight: everyone was surprised the resulting smoke could not be seen as far away as Beach Road.
The fried chicken was cooked and ready to eat within minutes, while the baked potatoes took several hours longer than the expected fifteen minutes to cook, but in the end it all tasted delicious.
On the morning of the second day the campers all set of for a five kilometer trek through the ‘jungles’ of East Pattaya. The children were exhausted upon returning back to base only to have to face the Tunnel of Doom; a tunnel made through piles of tree branches and with one teacher smearing their faces with white paste and another sprinkling water through a hosepipe it was all a bit messy. Soaking wet, with aching feet and a face covered with white paste, most lay on the ground, too tired to move.
But the best fun was saved until the end of the final day when the children had to complete an army style assault course. Climbing rope ladders, gliding down to earth while wearing a harness and racing through tires and under rope nets with team members screaming encouragement was, according to the children, the best fun they have had all year.
Erecting a tent is not always as easy as it looks.
Fifteen minutes cooking time turned into three hours.
The boys were in charge of cooking the chicken.
The baked potatoes were delicious, eventually.
Gliding back down to earth.
Several children needed help from the older residents.
Surviving the Tunnel of Doom.
The dirtier the children were the happier the instructors were.
Exhausted, dirty and wet, but still happy to pose for the camera.
The result of attempting to light a fire using rubber.
The race is on.
Everyone had a great time at camp.