Friday, 31 August 2012 06:56

Mercy Kindergarten Student

Over 2, 500 slum children attend daily.

Our schools follow the Thai national kindergarten curriculum; and our school children learn to read, write, count, play, dance, say nice words, fight germs, and sing the old songs, the same ones our mothers and grandmothers taught us when we were young.

Our daily school fees -10 baht (30 baht = approx.US $1) per student - cover just a small fraction of the real costs to operate our schools. Although this 10 baht fee does not come close to covering expences, it empowers the parents and guardians to take ownership of their neighborhood school and value their children's education.

The daily school fee is waived for over 20% of our students - those whose parents and guardians are destitute.

One in five children who enters our schools is malnourished. All children receive a nutritious hot lunch, protein snacks, fruit and milk every school day.

In recent years we have formally handed over 11 Mercy preschools to their slum communities. These long-standing schools have helped to strengthen the surrounding communities to the point where the community leaders and parents can now operate their own schools themselves without our daily assistance. We remain as advisors to these schools and provide counsel and resources whenever needed.

In the past 40 years, over 40,000 poor children have graduated from our kindergartens with a head start as they enter government primary schools.

Photos by Guillaume Megevand. Photo gallery here.

Lining up for lunch time