Welcome Visitor:

Summer 2013 plans at TOLO

Activities while here at TOLO

If we are fortunate enough to have construction money we will be building a building here at TOLO, doing a cement slab and erecting 15 cement pillars for a two story building. This will give us three additional bedrooms and three more showers and three more bathrooms for adding additional children at the center and also provide some nice accommodation for our volunteers during their stay. We will have a large open area which will be created as a kitchen and dining area so we can consolidated our cooking to an open location and free up space at the front of the house. If sufficient money does not come we will be at Ban Yoei Sakae School for three to four weeks painting and fixing walls and landscaping. Also teaching English and playing sports with the children there. We have around 100 students per year at school at BYS and they range in ages from 4-14 (KG1, 2, grades 1 ,2, 3, 4, 5, and 6). W will also be doing English camps in late June and early July at a number of different elementary, lower secondary and high schools in Buriram province and will be spending at least one afternoon per week with several hundred students at the Buriram Rajabhat University who are majoring in English to give them the opportunity to practice and polish their English language skills. The Bouworde Belgians (8 of them) will arrive on the first of 1 July and they usually raise in excess of 100,000 baht (2,500 euros) or more for materials. We will order up and spread 140 truckloads of clean landfill and plant around 500 fruit trees. Kid time at TOLO is in the evenings and on weekends as all of our children here go to school except for a 1 year old. Weekends we are always busy with the kids at the center, involved in activities which include: art, music, computer, sports, clean up, swimming etc.. We never run our of things to do.

We will be getting the architectural drawings in a few more days for the new building which as of yet remains unnamed (make a significant donation and have a building named in your honor) and we will then price materials at the various builder's supply companies. The architect, Belgian Nicolas Debuyst who was a volunteer here has been out here five times already over the past four years. We hope to get folks who are willing to contribute or raise funds from their friends and associates to select certain items and say they will provide funds to buy specific materials and they will have numerous choices. I.e., one truckload of landfill costs 15 dollars (12 and a half euros). Tree saplings 500 trees (1 euro 20 each) 18 liter bucket of water-based exterior wall paint 1,150 baht (28 euros), etc. We will have projects both at the school (playgrounds) and at TOLO. We have come up with an idea for a campaign called "Pennies from Heaven," in which potential donors can set aside a large jar or can and deposit their coins into it until it is sufficiently full then deposit to their own account and send a pay-pal donation to the trustee of our website, Folke Walberg who is listed on our web site www.tolo-thailand.com. They could also take ithe container and offer their friends an opportunity to contribute and have them sign a list indicating what items they wish to furnish. If everyone who notify their friends and colleagues on face-book and on their email lists, at their place of work, leisure or worship of the need to get involved and they tell their friends and associates and so on it could end up becoming a major source of funds for buying the needed materials for the projects. Each year for the past four years Bouworde volunteers have sold cookies, pens, chocolates, and visited offices and businesses around their city in Belgium and held fund raising parties, dinners etc for their friends. Last year the three teams of Bouworde volunteers raised nearly 600,000 baht which built a beautiful wall around the school, added irrigation and water tanks, provided materials for rewiring the school, creating a shower-room for teachers and improving the toilets at the school, constructed steel bars on the windows, purchased new doors for each classroom,conducted a stem to stern painting of the entire school, provided additional ceiling fans, created a nursing station and purchased some cooking utensils for the school kitchen (which feeds 100 kids two meals per day when school is in session). I did Santa Claus locally at a department store in a full Santa suit and raised 85,000 baht (2,200 euros) to buy all new desks and chairs for the kids at school. Most of their other desks were as old as 70 years and were falling apart or eaten through by termites. When a lot of folks get involved we accomplish a lot of good work and change the lives of so many indigent children. It gives the volunteers a chance to see how much good they can do in a relatively short time as well. Participating out here is a lifelong rewarding experience which we make together can make all the difference in the world. The summer of 2-13 will be a time for focusing on the building at TOLO. We have been concentrating on the Ban Yoei Sakae School since 2005 but are now shifting our primary efforts as of 2013 to further developing facilities at Tree of Life Orphanage Buriram itself.

Roger Walker
Founder and Director TOLO