Support Community Development in South-East Asia

by The Branch Foundation
Vetted
Children at Koung Jor Shan refugee camp
Children at Koung Jor Shan refugee camp

Firstly, all the team at The Branch Foundation would like to thank you for your generous donation towards promoting sustainable community development in Southeast Asia. We generate a large majority of our funding through GlobalGiving and without the support from people like you, we simply would not be able to carry out the work we do.

Over the past few months, we have been busy providing educational opportunities at the Koung Jor Shan refugee camp and to migrant populations in Chiang Mai province. These activities range from paying local teacher wages through to helping students apply for universities via CV writing in English and Interview technique classes.

In just over a weeks time we will be holding another teacher training session at Koung Jor Shan refugee camp with the focus on ensuring the teachers are able to make the most of the new English language text books we recently provided. We are also reaching out to other organisations in the area in order to prepare for a new round of 'Future Planning' workshops for their students who wish to progress further with their education. These workshops have proven to be very successful in the past, with one student writing the following in our assessment form:

"Learning how to write a CV has shown me that I have many skills to offer future employers and practicing interview skills has made my confidence grow".

We sincerely hope that you continue the journey with us to ensure that marginalised people in the region are given the same opportunities available to the wider population around them.

With gratitude,

Tom Rosen and The Branch Foundation Team

Teachers after previous teacher training session
Teachers after previous teacher training session
Evening English class
Evening English class
Local monks practising their English at Koung Jor
Local monks practising their English at Koung Jor

Dear Friends of The Branch Foundation,

Since our last report to you, we have entered a new financial year for the organisation. With that comes a time to reflect on the previous year's successes/challenges and allows us to focus on what we would like to achieve in the coming months. 2015/16 was a year of education projects for us here at TBF, including:

  • Supporting teacher stipends and educational resources at Koung Jor refugee camp
  • Providing workshops to help refugees and migrants apply for higher education
  • Facilitating teacher training sessions to improve the overall quality of teaching in remote communities

Sustainability has always been one of the main considerations when deciding on and implementing projects and this year we plan to strengthen that ethos. We have always strived to work alongside communities, to provide a helping hand in order for them to become self sufficient and with that in mind we plan to assist our partner organisations so that they have more tools at their disposal to benefit their community. Therefore, during 2016/17, as well as continuing with our existing projects, we will be focusing our attention on capacity building. We plan to provide workshops and assistance in the following areas:

  • How to crowdfund for community based projects
  • The benefits of effective storytelling
  • Photography and film making for advocacy
  • The use of websites and social media to reach a global audience

We are extremely excited about this and we hope you share our enthusiasm. Our work would not be possible without the generous support from people like you, therefore we kindly ask you to tell your friends and family about why you chose to donate to our organisation.

With Sincere Gratitude,

Tom Rosen and The Branch Foundation Team

Students receiving certificates in Chiang Mai
Students receiving certificates in Chiang Mai
Teacher training at Koung Jor refugee camp
Teacher training at Koung Jor refugee camp
Tea and catch up meeting at Koung Jor
Tea and catch up meeting at Koung Jor

Dear friends of The Branch Foundation, 

We just returned from a very productive few days at Koung Jor refugee camp. This trip we partnered with Mote Oo, an organisation that promotes social change through educational materials and services. The Branch Foundation team, along with Morgan from Mote Oo, conducted an education needs assessment with the teachers, education staff and students. Together we hope to improve the quality of education at Koung Jor, including educational materials and teacher training. We will be sure to keep you updated as these exciting developments unfold.

We are pleased to update you that we have a new solar project live on GlobalGiving: “Solar Lighting for Remote Communities in S.E. Asia.” If you are passionate about renewable energy this project is a fantastic way to support marginalized communities to have clean and green lighting.

In the past few months we have also held a few fun and engaging fundraising events including a Beets and Beats night in Chiang Mai where a generous volunteer made beetroot burgers with the sole purpose of raising funds for our projects! If you have a creative fundraising idea and want to help fundraise for The Branch Foundation please email us: info@thebranchfoundation.org

 Up and coming we have some exciting things on the horizon….

  • Our new website will be live before the end of March!
  • I will be making a trip to New Zealand in April, please message if you would like to set up a meeting with me.
  • Our new capacity building project is set to kick off in the next few months. We will be facilitating various professionals to come and train the Koung Refugee camp team in photography, social media and the use of Global Giving so they can set-up and manage their own projects.

Thank you for your ongoing support and making our work possible!

With gratitude,

Iona & The Branch Foundation Team

The education evaluation team
The education evaluation team
TBF directors at Koung Jor refugee camp
TBF directors at Koung Jor refugee camp
The amazing team behind the Beets & Beats event
The amazing team behind the Beets & Beats event

Links:

Teachers receive their certificates after training
Teachers receive their certificates after training

We're always excited to bring you updates from The Branch Foundation office as it gives us the chance to communicate with our valued supporters. The last month of the year is a good time to look back at all what we have achieved along with your help. During 2015, TBF and its partners have concentrated our efforts on providing more educational opportunities for both refugee and migrant communities along the Thai-Burma border. This has come in the form of supporting teacher wages and multiple teacher training sessions at Koung Jor Shan refugee camp, and providing soft skills development workshops in Chiang Mai.

Not only have we been busy with our projects in recent months, but we have also concentrated on ensuring that TBF itself is sustainable as an organisation - this has meant us planning carefully for the long-term. With that in mind, it has always been our goal to put the means of positive change into the hands of the communities with which we work, therefore, we have planned various workshops for the first half of 2016. These include a 'photography for advocacy' and a 'website/blogging' course to ensure that the communities themselves have the opportunity to communicate their needs directly to the world.

For many people, the month of December is a month of giving therefore we would like to inform you about our fundraising initiatives which, following the theme of this year, will help support those who do not have easy access to high quality education. We are inviting people to hold a 'dinner by candlelight', in which people invite their friends and family to eat together without the use of electricity - as is the way of life for many community members with which we work. The proceeds from these dinners will go directly to the following project:

http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/educate-140-refugees-on-the-thai-burma-border/

If you are interested in helping us reach our goal to continue to support teacher wages and training in a remote refugee camp, please fill out the form on THIS page so we can send you more details.

Alternatively, if you want support this project via the means of a gift to a loved one, please click HERE.

We hope you have a happy festive season and look forward to updating you in the New Year.

With sincere gratitude,

Tom Rosen and The Branch Foundation Team.

Dinner by Candlelight held in Thailand last year
Dinner by Candlelight held in Thailand last year
Help us support these children
Help us support these children's future

Links:

Eleanor Harrison, CEO of GlobalGiving UK
Eleanor Harrison, CEO of GlobalGiving UK

The last few months have been packed with exciting developments. We had the honour of meeting Eleanor Harrison, CEO of GlobalGiving UK, in London. We also met the rest of the GlobalGiving UK team over lunchtime sandwiches and shared information about The Branch Foundation and working in South-East Asia. It was lovely to finally meet in person and to get to know the team and the inner workings of the office a little better. In August we also had the previlage of having Alice & Tapiwa GlobalGiving UK's Field Evaluation team visit us in Chiang Mai. During their five day visit we also took Alice and Tapiwa to the Koung Jor refugee camp to meet the community and see our projects first hand. You can read more about their trip here.

It is also with great excitement that I present you with our very first Annual Report! I hope you enjoy it and are proud of what we have collectively achieved, I know I sure am. As I saw the pages of the report come together it became evident just how much we had achieved in one year....

The Branch Foundation - Annual Report 2014/15

As we near the final quarter of this year we are in full holiday fundraising planning mode. We will be hosting our annual Chiang Mai fundraiser on October 30th, we’ll also be bringing back our successful Dinner by Candlelight campaign and of course our ever popular Gifts of a Different Kind. We will be sure to keep you updated and look forward to an exciting few months ahead.

With gratitude,

Iona Proebst and The Branch Foundation Team.

Alice & Tapiwa
Alice & Tapiwa
Meeting with the Koung Jor head man
Meeting with the Koung Jor head man

Links:

 

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Organization Information

The Branch Foundation

Location: Chiang Mai - Thailand
Website: http:/​/​www.thebranchfoundation.org
Project Leader:
Tom Rosen
Project Manager
Chiang Mai, Chiang Mai Thailand

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