Mandatory Temperature Checks
We are delighted to share that the Thai Child Development Foundation’s school for special needs students has reopened and is welcoming back students!
For the past 6+months, TCDF's social programs remained open but the non-emergency house visits and hospital visits were postponed due to the pandemic. With the area reopening, one of the biggest challenges lies in visiting all schools and village healthcare stations and reacting to their emergency needs. TCDF is expecting an increased demand for their medical care program and the home outreach programs.
One of the biggest obstacles moving forward for TCDF is the loss in revenue as their Ecologic resort for charity is closed and we will not have any visitors for at least a year. The revenue loss is two-fold: first the loss in sales of the farm produce due to closure of the restaurant and secondly the significant decrease in new small sponsors coming from visitors who have witnessed the power small donations can make and became part of the monthly Friends program.
What TCDF benefits from is low overhead costs and the proactive, flexible and creative approach they’ve adopted to meeting the challenges from the pandemic and accompanying Thai economic crisis. An example of this creativity is while the school was closed, the teachers changed jobs and worked in the garden every day! Composting and mulching the young trees, digging the water gutters, putting in water drips and making staircases for the students to easily walk uphill after the reopening of the school. The thousands of fruit trees are too young to bear fruit but the farm did provide the team with plenty of organic vegetables, fish and eggs. At the end of the day the produce would be sold at the gate to local people who ordered via Facebook. While this revenue stream doesn’t offset the losses from Ecologic, it certainly carried TCDF through the pandemic!
Now that the school is reopened, young adults with disabilities are able to return and continue their occupational training program. TCDF is currently tapping into new markets to sell all the produce the students work on every day. For 2020 the plan was to expand the occupational training programs in order to increase their local sustainability and create solid jobs for the young adults with disabilities. However, like so many others this years plan as well as 2021 is being revised to adapt to the changing global climate.
The water management system plans are also being revised to meet the new global reality as our key partner is unable to travel from Australia for the implementation. Fortunately our corporate partner has several suppliers with operations in Thailand that have stepped forward to fill the gap and help the project continue. After receiving special permission by local authorities to visit the region during the lockdown, a report was issued examining the planned project for viability and to problem solve two challenges regarding water storage. Pending availability of the teams in Thailand and continued access to the region, planned implementation is for the upcoming dry season which will run into early 2021. As the timeline is confirmed short project updates will be submitted to keep all of our donors updated.
While this year has been filled with many ups and downs, it has also made us even more grateful for our incredible network of supporters… the donors, volunteers and mentors. Thank you!
These photos are courtesy of TCDF in Thailand.
Workgroups are 5 to 6 Students
All Precautions Have Been Taken for Entry to TCDF