Our guests’ donations and essential food supplies delivered to Baan Sob Harn School
Mae Sariang town is located in an idyllic valley surrounded by high mountains in the Mae Hong Song province in Northern Thailand. Many visitors embarking on the Mae Hong Son loop will know the town as one of the most common stops to spend a night along the 600-kilometer route. We have a close connection to this area as most of our elephant handlers or mahouts come Mae Sariang and surrounding villages. Our mahouts are part of the Karen hill tribe, and so are the majority of the children attending Baan Sob Harn School.
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We had a pleasure to visit Baan Sob Harn School for the fourth time recently, delivering the donations from our guests, along with essential food supplies. This school used to be one of the smallest schools in Mae Sariang, but it has grown during the past year and now has 62 students, of which 19 are staying at the dormitory. One of the very unfortunate reasons for this is the increased clashes between the Karen people and Myanmar military at the border close by. Mae Sariang town is located only about 50km from the border across a mountain via a treacherous winding road.
Mae Sariang schools on standby for more pupils arriving from conflict areas
The teachers expressed their concern over the situation as the parents understandably are unable to care for their children in the dangerous conflict areas and want to send them to safety. It was heartbreaking to learn that some children attending Baan Sob Harn school had even lost one or both of their parents. The plight of the Karen people has caused the schools in Mae Sariang to be on standby for more pupils arriving, including those needing a dormitory placement.
Our previous projects with this school include supporting their gardening project and donating catfish fingerlings to help them become more self-sufficient with ingredients for school meals. This time the teachers had asked for long lasting shelf stable food ingredients such as dried and canned fish, rice noodles, sauces and eggs. These supplies will help the school to feed the increasing number of children staying in the dormitory.
“Pack with a purpose” initiative has a great impact
This donation was completed with amazing colorful and interesting books and educational toys. The kids were thrilled to try out the playdough and various kinds of games. The teachers were equally pleased to receive our guests’ donations and told us that normally they would make the jigsaw puzzles and vocabulary cards by themselves, but they wouldn’t be as durable and engaging as those brought by our guests from all over the world.
Children’s books and cards with mainly pictures with simple English vocabulary such as colors, weekdays, animals, numbers are very much welcomed by the rural schools in Thailand. These along with coloring books and toys immediately caught the kids’ attention and they spent a long time exploring the donations and playing with the Elephant Hills team. The donations received within our “Pack with a purpose” initiative truly make a huge difference and we are pleased to keep receiving and delivering them to the less privileged Thai children.
On behalf of Baan Sob Harn School and the Elephant Hills team, sincere thanks for your donation!
Find out what items are on the “Pack with a purpose” list here to prepare for your upcoming visit at Elephant Hills. Our Children’s Project is currently looking for travel agents and other companies to co-operate with us via corporate sponsorship. If you or your company would be interested in helping the less fortunate children, read more here or contact us at [email protected] for more information.