We left the school at 15.30, somewhat dazed and possibly suffering from Post Traumatic Shock, just wanting to go back to the hotel and find the coldest bottle of beer in Thailand and have a swim.
However, volunteering is not just about sunshine and beach. Cec said that we would enjoy the next stop – 20 minutes by Songthaew we pulled up at the Home and Life Orphanage. It’s a group of huts and buildings located by a main road and next to a small river. When we arrived there were on 2 or 3 kids running around, the others had not yet arrived back from school.
In total there are 26 kids here, aged from 3 to 16 years old. We were introduced to the 2 little ones.
The school bus turned up and a swarm of kids all dressed in Boy Scout or Girl Guide uniforms jumped out. I thought we had been invited to a Jamboree! No, Cec informed us that if kids became involved in the Scout/Guide movement, they would be exempt from doing National Service. Sounds better than shooting people.
They all went and changed and then joined us for a outdoor lesson in English…. Bugger me! who was there, the little terror from our first day Uhm ( the little lad I sat on) I hadn’t been informed that he was from the orphanage and the day we taught him had been his 11th birthday- probably why he was so excited.
Because we were new we had to introduce ourselves to the kids. Well we had a: Bim & Boom (twins), Ocean, Sea, Bomm, Boy, Cindi, Steve, Peter, Peach and of course another Nut, (not forgetting Uhm).
We had a terrific couple of hours with them. We taught them English words based around Christmas and sang Jingle bells over and over again.
The orphanage try and raise funds themselves and have a bakery. They are in the process of building a new Tea Room/Coffee Bar which will generate extra money. It will also be a place where the kids learn skills and improve their English.
Check out their website: http://www.homelifethailand.com/