As the five Building Futures Thailand (BFT) volunteers arrived in Siray Bay, we were greeted by Mr. Kittiphum the Director of the Koh Sirae School. The majority of the children who attend this school rely on it for their daily needs such as food and clothing in addition to their education, so the school’s operational budget never seems to be enough to cover all the basic requirements. This week’s project will focus on a complete overhaul of the school’s library which will include a new computer lab that will be used by the 1000 students who attend the school.
Our day started by assessing the pre-ordered supplies and organizing boxes to ensure we had all the necessary materials to begin our work. By Friday of this week, the library will be painted, include all new furniture, two routers for a new WiFi network and 17 all-in-one HP workstations. The five volunteers that will be completing the project this week are from the United States and reside in Virginia, Nebraska, and California.
For more information on Build Furtures Thailand or to donate, please visit their website.
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
After day two, the painting required across the roughly 1500 square foot room is almost complete and half of the new library furniture is now assembled which included bookshelves and tables. Each day as the team works the children watch through the windows as the transformation occurs right before their eyes. During the school’s daily breaks, many wander over to be near the action as they frequently check-in on our progress and stop in to smile and wave. Regardless of the language barrier, it’s obvious they want to help so tomorrow we have a few things planned for those who stop by.
Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Today’s focus was primarily on furniture as we assembled 50 office chairs, bookshelf cabinets and utility tables for the library with the help of some of the students. Most of the kids who attend the Koh Sirae School are middle school age; however, the facility supports children up to age sixteen. While we waited for additional paint to be delivered to finish the walls tomorrow, work also began on the room configuration to accommodate Thursday’s computer delivery and WiFi network installation. The excitement is beginning to build as the room is starting to take shape and will be completed by Friday.
Thursday, November 28, 2013
As our last full work day started on Thanksgiving, we still had a lot to do to ensure the project would be completed in time for the school party scheduled for the kids to see their new library on Friday morning. The HP all-in-on computer work stations were delivered around 11am and installed while blinds were hung around the room and paint trim was finished. Following the installation of the Fathead wall décor decals and magnet boards in the check-in area by the front door, a new chalk board decal was also affixed to the reading area which includes bean bag chairs for the kids to sit in while they read. The final touches were made, basic cleaning done and the furniture was reset before the pictures were snapped and high fives all around as this year’s project came to a close. What a great way to give thanks.