Community rejoices as children move into new Baan Jing Jai home


Children’s Day was a truly special one for the kids of the Baan Jing Jai orphanage, who saw Norwegian Ambassador Kjetil Paulsen officially open the foundation’s new home for 70 infants and youths.

His Excellency was joined at the Jan. 9 ceremony by Banglamung District Chief Chakorn Kanchawattana, Hans Konrad Nyvoll, Chairman of the Building Committee, Rune Gisvold, Chief of Staff Globally Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, Trond Tonjum, VP of Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics in South East Asia, popular singer and philanthropist ‘Sputnik’ and hundreds of orphanage supporters.

Rev. Ragnvald Seierstad and Rev. Surakit Kamonrat lead the congregation in holy prayer.

In attendance were also members of the building committee incuding Gudmund Eiksund, Stephen Beard, Jim Farmer, John Haerum, Vutikorn Kamolchote, Ponsawan Kankaew, Jan Olav Åamlid, Nancy Bradburn and Rev. Surakit Kamonrat.

The event began with a Christian religious service administered by Rev. Ragnvald Seierstad of the Seaman’s Church and Rev. Surakit Kamonrat before management and guests of honour joined to cut the ribbon. Other activities included dancing shows performed by the kids from Baan Jing Jai.

Sputnik, the man with a heart of gold.

With a budget of more than 25 million baht donated by supporters, Baan Jing Jai Foundation is now officially established in its new home.

The architecture for the house was donated to create space for 40 males, 40 females and 20 babies. Baan Jing Jai also has a medical center, a library, rooms for recreational activities, and other facilities spread out over 1,350 sq. meters. This does not include the gardens or playground and more children are expected on a yearly basis.

Baan Jing Jai has also formed a working committee to support its projects to build more facilities and raise funds as more children are expected.

Baan Jing Jai Foundation is under the management of Sununta Khumnunta, the president and Piangta Chumnoi as director. There are 75 kids in total and ages range from 7-18. The majority of them are homeless, abandoned by their family, misguided, lost in life and don’t have a particular position in the society. But Bann Jing Jai has changed that by offering the children love and care.

Hans Konrad Nyvoll, Chairman of the Building Committee makes his report.

Under the supervision of Piangta, the kids are supported as family members and are given the opportunity to study, learn English and take steps up like ordinary children until they are able to support themselves with a proper job.

The foundation itself was established under the support of foreign expats and Thais alike, especially the Norwegian community in Pattaya and around Thailand.

The new home is located on 4.2 rai in Nong Plalai near the Highway 36-Highway 7 interchange and is only one kilometre away from the Regents International School.

Sunanta guides the scissors bearing toddlers for the ribbon cutting ceremony.

The Baan Jing Jai Foundation was founded in 1992 and was supported by the Church of Christ Thailand in Bangkok which initially rented a small home for local children in Pattaya. Most of these kids were found begging, homeless, had no family or were being abused and decided to leave home to face street life, so they were taken in for care. All kids were then later encouraged to study and keep them away from the streets.

The ribbon cutting ceremony. (l-r) Trond Tonjum, Rev. Surakit Kamonrat, H.E. Kjetil Paulsen, the Norwegian Ambassador, Chakorn Kanchawattana, Banglamung District Chief and Piangta Chumnoi.

Baan Jing Jai expenses amount to approximately 40,000 baht per month, including rent, water, electricity, clothes for the kids, medical products, food and other needed items. The foundation came to be supported by Norwegian expats and locals who raised funds and registered Baan Jing Jai as a legal foundation.

Rachada (Toy) Chomjinda (left), Director of the HHN Foundation Thailand congratulates Piangta Chumnoi.

Trond Tonjum, VP of Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics presents the home with a water purifier system.

Helle Rantsen, president of the PILC, a staunch supporter of the home, attended the ceremonies.

Sunanta Khumnunta sits with Vutikorn Kamolchote (right) of the building committee taking a break during the proceedings.

The ever so popular ‘Sputnik’ from Norway sang about opening our hearts and letting the sun shine in bringing love and compassion for our fellow humankind.

Lovely girls perform the ‘Ram Ueyporn’ traditional Thai dance of blessings and welcome.

Sununta Khumnunta and Piangta Chumnoi (top), chair and president of the Baan Jing Jai Foundation respectively, together with the children attend the religious ceremonies before leading them through the gates of the New Baan Jing Jai children Home.

John Haerum, one of the committee members sits in contemplation feeling truly contented with their achievement.

Children say ‘thank you’ for giving them a new home.

(l-r) Peter Malhotra, MD Pattaya Mail served as master of ceremonies for the event, Gudmund Eiksund MD Norwegian Properties, Trond Tonjum, H.E. Kjetil Paulsen and Rune Gisvold, Chief of Staff Globally Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics.

The children jump for joy celebrating the completion of their new home.

Dr Penguin once again stole the children’s hearts with his compassion and love.

Hundreds of people came from far and wide to be with the children on this happy occasion.