We’ve finally arrived to Thailand!  When we made it to Phuket, we were traDSC_0124nsported by bus to the Home & Life Orphanage where Youthlinc first got started in Thailand after the 2004 tsunami.  The children performed for us, and we learned their names and got to play with them for the next few hours.  After just this experience, we knew that the rest of the trip was going to be great!

On Sunday, we took a tour of the Burmese Learning Center where we would work for the duration of our trip. We were event able to start some construction projects– taking down a playground and picking up around the building.  Today we started all of our big projects. A few of us taught lessons on subjects ranging from colors to numbers to countries. Each member taught three lessons, each a half an hour. It was a great experience because the school kids got so excited and were all willing to play the games that we prepared. Most of the kids already knew most of what we were trying to teach them, which made the games a whole lot more fun because they were able to understand what it was about.

All 41 of us have been working hard!  We’ve started construction of a bathroom, and helped take down 18 palm trees in order to clear a path for a fence that we’ll build in the next week.  Others worked to clear out the rusted playground in order to make room for the new one we’re building. We also worked on a hydroponic garden so the kids and teachers can eat fresh greens and sell the excess.

DSC_0059We also had the opportunity to visit a temple that was once flooded by the tsunami and teach the women and children there sewing techniques and also exchange cultural ideas and traditions. We are teaching a group of 25-30 women how to make the young girls dresses out of pillow cases that are super cute and easy to sew! It is so amazing how easily these women pick up on things. As we began to teach them the simple techniques of sewing, it surprised us how much they already knew, and if they didn’t know they quickly picked up on it and followed our instructions perfectly. The Burmese women and children are so responsive and very smart, it’s absolutely amazing!

As far as our Cultural Exchanges, our group was able to teach women and young adults some of the typical American games such as, Down By the Banks, Duck Duck Goose, and jumping rope. In return, the children taught us games they commonly play which are a DSC_0084total work out! Their games consist of constant running and screaming—it’s very fun to watch. Working with these Burmese women and children is so rewarding, they are amazing people and have taught us so much!

Thailand is simply amazing. Although the weather will go from extreme humidity and heat to heavy down pouring rain we always are able to make the best of it. The work we are doing is hard and we are exhausted at night but seeing the impact that we are having on this community is so worth it. We are loving serving the Burmese people of Thailand!

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