Help us build an Orphanage – Sangklaburi, northwest Thailand
|Project At A Glance
|Location: Sangklaburi, Thailand
Start Point: Bangkok
End Point: Sangklaburi
Duration: 1-12 Weeks
Hours: 30-40 Hours per week
Arrival Date: First Friday of the month
Food: Meals not included
Room: Shared volunteer house
Sangklaburi is located in the northwest of Thailand on the border with Myanmar (formerly Burma). The area is beautiful and mountainous on the banks of one of Thailand’s largest man-made reservoirs. Due to its location, the population is made up of local Thai people, Karen, Mon and Burmese immigrants. As the vast majority of the immigrants have no official paperwork or residence, they are open to the very real dangers of human trafficking. Part of our partners work in this area revolves around the need to raise awareness of this threat, starting with educating the children.
Build an Orphanage
In late 2011, through a mammoth fundraising effort, our partners in Thailand raised enough money to purchase a plot of land in the area. On this land they are building a new orphanage, called the DREAM House. Presently we care for 38 children living together in a small rented house that is completely inadequate for their needs.
By becoming a volunteer on this project, part of your fee is being used directly to purchase the required materials. Your physical presence on the site is helping to shelter and care for these kids. You will be making a very real difference to the lives of these children.
The project is to be completed in three phases. Currently phase one is to clear the land and prepare it for the foundations to be laid. Moving on we will be constructing accommodation for up to the 150 children on our waiting list. Finally we will also construct areas for cooking, washing linens, shower blocks, classrooms and having an area that is safe, healthy and secure for the children to develop, learn and mature.
No skills or requirements are needed to volunteer on this project. If you do possess a skill that you feel is beneficial to the work please let us know what it is so we can prepare for your arrival. Volunteers are expected to be flexible, patient and possess a passion and love for working with people and on active projects. This project may require good physical condition.
Volunteer work here is 5 days a week. You will have the weekend to explore locally or further afield. Travelling and experiencing Thailand’s beauty is all part of the volunteer experience. Our staff will help you organize your free time or end of placement travel. Come to Thailand, volunteer, travel and have an amazing time.
In Sangklaburi our volunteers live in shared houses. These houses are rented from the local communities and feature several twin bedrooms, bathrooms with hot showers, a basic but functional kitchen, in and outdoor communal areas and more. The bedrooms are basic but include beds and bedding, basic storage, a fan and mosquito nets on the windows. They also include electrical sockets for volunteers to charge items like phones, camera’s etc.
The houses are all located close to each other and close to our staff accommodation and office. Moreover they are all a very short walk from amenities such as internet café’s, ATM’s, a hospital, bars, restaurants, supermarkets and more.
More about Sangklaburi
Sangklaburi is a town located on the border with Myanmar (formerly Burma). Due to its location, Sangklaburi has a huge migrant population made up of Burmese and Laotians. Sangklaburi is also home to many hill tribes. Immigrants from Myanmar, Laos and Thai Hill Tribe people are stateless, having no citizenship. This means they cannot get support from the Thai Government, have no access to education, medical relief and more. These are basic needs which are provided by volunteer organisations and NGOs. The volunteer work in Sangklaburi is diverse and extensive.
Sangklaburi is an idyllic place and well worth visiting as it is off the usual tourist trails and thus great for those wanting to see and experience the "real Thailand.” The town centers around the market square become quite busy in the early evening with locals buying fruits, meats and ready-made dinners.
The most well-known landmark of the town is ‘Saphan Mon’ or the Bridge to the Mon Side. The 400m wooden bridge itself is well worth a visit and is the longest handmade wooden bridge in Thailand. There is a small cafe on one end which is a great spot for a drink and a view. Be careful when crossing the bridge though, it is made and repaired in a chaotic manner and you need to be careful of your footing. There are donation boxes at either end which pay for the bridges constant upkeep. So consider donating, as you will receive an amazing photo in return! Local kids like to jump off the bridge into lake; see for yourself!
A nice to place to visit is Wat (temple) Wang Wiwekaram and Chedi Buddhakhaya; walk over the bridge to the Mon village, and bear left parallel to the lake. After approximately 2km the concrete road forks where taking a left goes to the huge golden chedi, with a small Burmese goods market below it and taking a right goes to the main Wat Wang Wiwekaram. The Wat was built by the late Phara Uttama, who was one of the most important Monks in Thailand, and is still highly revered in the Mon community. There is a large, ornate viharn at the main wat, and in another building there are murals depicting stages of the Buddha's last and previous lives. You may wish to hire a taxi as for some it might be a long walk to the temple and it is easy to get lost in Wangka village (although the locals will be happy to point you in the right direction). There are several places to eat and drink in and around the town. Our team in Sangklaburi will be happy to point out places of interest. Meals are very cheap and tasty. We recommend trying all of the different types of food available.
Due to easing tensions in neighboring Burma, it may be possible to enter the country at the Three Pagodas Pass border crossing on a day entry visa. However, it must be understood that this situation can change quickly and without prior notice. Our coordinators in country will give you the most up to date information on the situation when you are in Thailand.
Weekends in Sangklaburi can be a combination of rest and play. Newly opened on the outskirts of the village is the Nature Club, a sprawling natural park offering many activities from zip lines to quad bikes to swimming in the many lakes. As Sangklaburi town is situated on the banks of the lake, you can sunbathe and swim locally. In addition, our team in the town may also organise activities such as Thai lessons or you can spend time with the children at the children’s home called ‘DREAM House’.