During the month of October, a primary school in
Amsterdam focussed all its attention, creativity and energy on Thailand. It
started with a visit of one of the teachers to the school projects of the
Foundation Samsara working under the umbrella of FERC (Foundation for
Education of Rural Children).
Thai flea market in Amsterdam.
In the mountains of Mae Sariang last January, Ludy
Oosterhof visited some poor schools where new dormitories, canteens and
water installations were being built with donations of the two foundations.
She noticed how much could be done with those donations. She also thought
how interesting it would be if the students from her school in the
Netherlands knew more about the daily life of hill tribe children at those
schools and more in general about the culture, religion and way of life in
On her return, she discussed this idea with school
director Anton Visser. It was decided that during the month of October the
school would focus a part of its curriculum on Thailand, and the teachers
with the parents and the children would organise many activities about
Thailand with the aim to raise money for a dormitory and water purification
installations at some schools in the mountains of Mae Sariang.
selected a book from their own private collection to be sold at a Thai
bazaar organised for fundraising.
Each day during the project, Samsara sent the children a
little story about Thailand with a picture attached by email. They learnt
about the life of the hill tribes, Thailand’s flag, history, geography,
spirit houses, tuk tuk’s insects as snacks, Buddhism, the Thai alphabet
Students selected a book from their own private
collection to be sold at a Thai bazaar organised for fundraising. During the
project they learnt to cook Thai recipes and also those were made and sold
also at the market. During other classes and at home they made beautiful
things to sell as bracelets, paper elephants, art work about Thailand,
butterflies, and spirit houses.
children learnt about the life of the hill tribes, Thailand’s flag,
history, geography, spirit houses, tuk-tuks, insects as snacks, Buddhism,
the Thai alphabet and more.
Students wrote papers about Thailand, which were on
display for the parents, and neighbours who visited their markets.
Parents, teachers and children also organised a sponsored
By coincidence one family with their two sons at the same
school visited Thailand during their summer holiday last August. With the
members of Samsara Foundation they also visited some of the schools. Back
home they could tell stories about Thailand from their own experience.
At the opening and closing ceremony of the school project
all students wore the same blue/white uniform as Thai children normally do.
During the closing ceremony, while all students did some Thai boxing at the
schoolyard, the director proudly announced that the fundraising activities
raised 13,194 euro (633,333 baht) including a private gift of 5,000 euro.
The Samsara Foundation would like to thank all students, teachers and
parents for this fantastic result. The Dutch Foundation Wilde Ganzen/Icco
will triple this result by their matching fund to stimulate this kind of
The Samsara Foundation will start to build the dormitories, drinking
water installations and the delivery books for school libraries by the end
of November at many schools in Mae Sariang.
opening and closing ceremony of the school project, all students wore the
same blue/white uniform as Thai children.