Aidan and Gerry are mates who are riding from Pattaya Thailand, through Cambodia and onto Laos before returning to their starting point in Pattaya. Their goal is to to raise funds for the Hand to Hand foundation who support children in the slums so they can stay with their families, rather than being abandoned into orphanages.
There are thousands of people living in slums in Pattaya Thailand due to poor employment oopportunities. In Thailand there is little or no social insurance and the assistance from the government has not filtered down to the poorest of the poor. Many families struggle to make ends meet and this has resulted in Thailand have one of the highest suicide rates in South East Asia. Hand to Hand provides support to families so that they do not abandon their children into orphanges due to poverty.
Hand to Hand has a wholistic approach to helping the poor which includes education, food, medical care, housing, job training to help skill unemployed people for employment. Without education their present and future situation is bleak. Without food and housing families feel they have no other choice but to abandon their child to ensure they are given the basic needs. Job training develops self esteem and hope as they actively make difference in their own situations and those of others.
Providing education and skills training, the poor not only have the opportunity to earn an income their whole physical and mental wellbeing improves dramtically. Without food children simply die and parents abandon them into orphanages due to poverty. Keeping the child in family unit is key to helping them grow and become positive contributors to their families and wider society in the future.