Campaign Report Part 3 – future plans and photos

by Travel Paulie on September 5, 2010

P'ya Daung School Children, Maesot, Thailand

On the 29th June I officially launched my PCs for Migrant Children campaign.  I had originally expected it to be a quiet affair with a few modest donations permitting me to purchase perhaps one or two computers at most.  It turned out to be far more successful than I imagined and it kept me very, very busy in Maesot right up until the morning I left (which was last Sunday – 22nd August 2010).

This article forms part 3 of a 3-part series.  Please use the links below to jump to the particular section you wish to view:

Plans for the future

As outlined in one of my earlier articles, I’m giving serious consideration to returning to Maesot for the purposes of working further with the migrant community there.  I’d like to do so at the beginning of 2011 so I’ve quite a bit of work ahead of me if I really want to achieve this in the next four months.  I would like a job with an organisation than will afford me the free time to work a little independently with the people I already know, and part of this is to follow on with my PCs for migrant children project.

However, given the ‘lessons learned’ that I discussed in the previous article in this series, I am questioning the efficacy of putting computers in the schools, and considering my options.  Part 1 outlined the total monies received, and the total spent so-far, so I have a little bit more money to play with.  Should I continue on as before, or change tact a little?

If I change tact, how would I do so?  Well I have a couple of options really…

  1. One important area that I thought wasn’t being addressed is literacy… in the school within which I spent most of my time, there were no books.  There were some text books, but no novels either in Burmese, Karen, Thai or English.  The children had nothing in the way of recreational reading.  So I could try to acquire books and have them placed within a make-shift library in the school  There are also other models out there for doing this sort of work, so a bit of research on my part would be best before I launch into that.
  2. I mentioned in the last article, and discussed it again a few weeks ago – the parents of these children are all farmers.  If a child here does not continue their education beyond basic schooling, they will simply return to their families and continue on the family “business”.  Some may be lucky and receive scholarships for university, but they are rare.  So, is anything that they are being taught remotely useful to them for the future?  Yes, of course.  But English and computing?  I don’t thinks so (compared with other things that could be taught).  What is important then?  There are heaps of things, but one I think is completely overlooked is agriculture.  This is an agrarian society, after-all.  So why not teach them about basic/advanced agricultural practices and technology in this area?  Run training programs based on the latest techniques in such a capacity that it is useful and applicable to them when they return to life-as-normal?  There are other areas, such as health, hygiene, family planning etc. that I believe are already being addressed, but I can’t be sure.

Honestly, I don’t have the answers, but instead of just attempting to fix a problem that I perceive to be there, I’d like to spent more time to see what problems exist, and how I can offer my support.  I will certainly write more on this as my ideas/research develop, but for now, I have a place to start and experience to build off.

A BIG thank you to all

It’s been said before, but here it is again.  I’d like to thank everyone who offered their support for this project.  Every who contributed helped to make a direct and significant impact on the lives of many children, and I haven’t finished allocating all the money I received!  There is more work to be done, but I thank you for trusting me to do as I said I would and providing me with the opportunity to help these people.

There will be more updates as I progress, but for now that is the latest.  If you have any specific questions you’d like to ask, please don’t hesitate to drop me an email.


For now I’ve uploaded some photos to Flickr and hopefully you’ll be able to see them below.  They consist of the computers in the new boys’ computer room, the group photos of the grades 7 & 8 children I taught there, the teachers, photos of the boys in the computer room, and the girls in their dorm surrounding the computers (where you can just about see a monitor).

You can see the photos here on the site, but if you visit flickr using the link on the photo, you will see a brief description of each.  Enjoy!

[flickr-gallery mode=”photoset” photoset=”72157624753630613″]

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Chloe September 6, 2010 at 22:53

Lovely photos Paul! It’s great to see all my friends are looking happy!
You’ve done an amazing job there!


Paul Goodchild September 7, 2010 at 17:45

Thanks Chloe! 🙂
And yup, everyone there is happy alright… it’s weird, as you once said to me, to think of it still going on after you’ve left.


Dave September 7, 2010 at 17:34

Great stuff Paul! Good to see you doing some work for a change 🙂
Your points about agriculture and getting them books make sense. Would make a good phase 2.
(ps. the link to part 2 needs fixing)


Paul Goodchild September 7, 2010 at 17:47

Hey Dave, thanks for the comments! And whaddya mean “for a change”?! 😉

Phase 2 indeed… that’s what I’m thinking it will involve: books, and seeing if/how agricultural studies can be incorporated somehow. Early days.

And thanks for the heads up on the link. Fixed now 🙂


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