Our names are Anna and Isabelle and we’re 15 and 16 years old from Geraldton. Earlier this year we got together to plan a volunteer trip to Ayutthaya, Thailand in September this year. We’re working with an organisation called IFRE who run incredible volunteer programs to help people in need all over the world, in Asia, Africa and Latin America. The company is based in Dallas, Texas and have been working closely with us to organise our trip. They do amazing things for disadvantaged people, and through volunteering with them later this year we will help them to carry out their mission in continuing to make the world a better place.
IFRE offer many programs in Thailand, but we have chosen to take part in the Early Childcare and Learning Centre program which is run in the ancient city of Ayutthaya, about 90 kilometres from Thailand’s capital Bangkok. This program provides for children from the age of 2 years who attend a volunteer day care centre to enable their parents to go to work and earn the money needed to provide for their family. The goal of the program is to provide care and education for these disadvantaged children in order to lift them out of the poverty cycle so that they can embrace positive opportunities in the future.
While in Thailand, we will work alongside other volunteers from all over the world to provide fun and educational activities for the children such as basic English and counting classes, music, art and dancing. The centre also focuses on giving the children valuable life skills which are needed to become independent contributing members of society, such as gardening, cleaning, healthy cooking, computing, basic building and repair skills and education about hygiene and personal health. We believe that this program will have an enormous impact on the quality of life for these impoverished children, and we hope to be able to contribute our timed effort towards continuing this mission.
We have organised several fundraising events which have slowly but surely allowed us to raise the funds that we need to take part in this program. Volunteering is an expensive exercise, and we have made a realistic fundraising goal of $4000 which will enable us both to travel to Ayutthaya and participate in the program. This money would contribute towards paying for flights to Bangkok, the program fees and a donation to the centre. Any money raised above this goal would be donated to the centre so it can continue to provide fantastic opportunities for the children.
Our previous fundraising efforts include holding a stall at the Geraldton Railway Markets and creating a crowd funding page through the website gofundme.com, both of which proved effective methods of fundraising and kickstarted our journey. However, we still fall considerably short of our final goal and our deadline is quickly approaching. We are in the process of organising several other fundraising opportunities through personal communities which we would invite the wider community of Geraldton to get involved in to support us in our endeavour to help the children.
We would like to invite anyone who is willing to support our journey through donating to our GoFundMe pages. The system is super easy to use and we can guarantee that the money would go towards an incredible cause. Any donation, no matter how big or small would be so greatly appreciated and so please consider helping us out. Our pages are linked at the bottom of the article, as well as our contact details so please feel free go and have a look or contact either one of us if you have any questions at all about our trip!
Thank you so much for taking the time to read about our volunteer mission, and we hope to hear from you soon!
Kind Regards and many thanks,
Anna Wilson and Isabelle Laurent
READ UP ABOUT IFRE
Ayutthaya Childcare Development Project:
Isabelle: 0439 260 766
Anna: 0439 910 380