Construction of an extension in the Chao Pho Luang Aupatham School
This project was launched through an initiative supported by HRH Princess Sirindhorn and is located next to the Myanmar border of Thailand’s most northerly province, Chiang Rai.
The government-sponsored Chao Pho Luang Aupatham School accommodates 600 students, 400 of which come from ethnic minorities and do not speak the official language, Thai. Border guards along the Myanmar border work not only to protect the national sovereignty, but also serve principally as teachers. They teach traditional subjects as well as a method of education which promotes self-sufficiency, a method initiated by HRH Princess Sirindhorn. Alongside their classes, students can also have lunch at the school so as to counter malnutrition, a frequent and severe problem in these remote regions. Students learn to plant, cultivate and harvest fruits and vegetables and also to raise pigs and hens. Every day, these foods are prepared at the school so that each student is guaranteed a well-balanced meal at least once a day. Students then pass on their knowledge to their families who, in turn, benefit from this programme.
After visiting the school for the first time, a decision was taken to replace the old wooden school building with a new concrete construction that would accommodate about 100 students. The structure included a first-aid room and toilet facilities as well as a new water tank which was built separately. This project was started in October 2007 and was completed in April 2008, costing CHF 100’000.-.
The main aims of the project were:
- To create an environment that improves the quality of education for the teachers and the students
- To improve hygiene conditions
- To tackle malnutrition
- To teach self-sufficiency