On Dec. 24th, HRH Princess Srirasmi celebrated her birthday together with our hospice patients, our Mercy children and our kindergarten students. Over 500 children joined together in a joyous outpouring of song and dance and birthday wishes. As a gift to the Princess, our Mercy children made several promises: they promised to be good, to study hard, never to take drugs, never to harm the environment, to spend wisely, to work together in harmony with society, and, most importantly, to do everything with with a generous heart. The Human Development Foundation is under the Royal Patronage of HRH Princess Srirasmi. Photos: Above: in our hospice with Mae Jiap and her baby named "Big." Below, with Mae Moiee.
We hosted World AIDS Day at our Mercy Centre on Nov. 27 - a community-wide event that brought together six local HIV/AIDS organizations, twenty three community leaders, five government schools (400 school children) and the Thai Health Ministry Director of AIDS Programs, Dr. Piyathayda Samuphrphut. It was the perfect day to get communities and organizations working together - organizations that included The HIV/AIDS Network of Thailand, Duang Prateep Foundation, Siam Care, Emergency House, We Understand Together, and, of course, our Mercy Centre. Together we used every tool at our disposal, from computers to sports to puzzles and games, in teaching the school children about prevention, understanding, and compassion. Please see our gallery of this event for more details.
Bangkok, Thailand: Father Joe Maier, C.Ss.R., a Co-founder and Director of The Human Development Foundation-Mercy Centre, was named an Ambassador of Child Protection in an award ceremony held at the Thai House of Parliament and presented by Prime Minister of Thailand Abhisit Vejjajiva on November 22, 2009.
Fr. Joe was nominated for the award by the Child Protection Taskforce of Thailand (a coalition of groups working with street children throughout Thailand) in recognition of his continuous four-decade commitment to the protection and education of the poorest slum children in Thailand.
Father Joe, a Catholic Priest ordained in the Redemptorist Order, first arrived in Thailand in 1967, ministering to the poor Catholic communities in Northeast Thailand and to the Hmong in Laos before settling permanently in Bangkok as the Parish Priest in the "Slaughterhouse" neighborhood in Klong Toey, Bangkok's largest slum community.
In 1973 Father Joe co-founded The Human Development Foundation to protect and educate the poorest children of all faiths. Under his direction, the foundation now oversees the largest network of slum kindergartens in Bangkok; provides shelter to 200 orphan children; represents and defends poor children in police stations and courts; protects street children throughout the city; and advocates for the fulfillment of the 1999 Thai Convention on the Rights of the Child.
The award as Child Protection Ambassador 2009 follows a Lifetime Achievement award presented to Father Joe in 2004 by Her Majesty the Queen of Thailand as the foreign resident who, "over the long-term, has contributed the most to the promotion of status and protection of women and children in Thailand."
November 10, 2009 - It was a fabulous day at Mercy Centre! Jackie Chan,
the beloved actor, martial artist, and Arts and Culture Representative of
the International Peace Foundation, dropped by to visit our children.
He joined hands with the patients in our AIDS hospice, drew art with
our school children from our Janusz Korczak School, and then sang
and danced with the school kids at our Mercy Centre kindergarten.
As he was leaving our Mercy Centre, Jackie Chan paused for a moment,
got out of his car, and gave a garland of flowers to a neighborhood
child as she was waving goodbye.
The Human Development – education pioneer in Bangkok slum communities – after having taught over forty five thousand slum children in the past thirty years, now brings a bold new era of Education to six slum communities.
March 10, 2009 In a joint signing ceremony between parents, community leaders, slum kindergarten school representatives and Human Development Foundation Klong Toey, Bangkok the HDF formally entrusted six total preschools, buildings, books, furniture, everything, to six slum communities.
Walk for Education.
2. Where will it be held?
Lumpini Park, Bangkok.
3. When is the date and time of the event?
Sunday, October 26th, 2008. Start 6.00 am, finish 11.00 am.
4. Who is the organizer?
OutLaurs PR & Event Management on behalf of Human Development Foundation-Mercy Centre.
5. What is Mercy Centre?
The HDF-Mercy Centre, a nondenominational community-based field organization, was founded in 1972 by Father Joe Maier and Sister Maria Chantavoradom to help strengthen the poorest communities and protect their children. Its Mercy Centre includes four homes and shelters for orphans; an adult AIDS hospice; a home for children and mothers living with HIV/AIDS; the largest of its Mercy preschools; and the administration center of HDF’s many community services.
Today the foundation cares for over 200 children in its homes and shelters, operates 30 preschools, and has long standing programs in place in the areas of education, child-protection, HIV/AIDS, and community services.
6. Who is Father Joe?
The Director and Co-founder of the Human Development Foundation, Father Joseph Maier, a US-born Catholic Priest, settled in Thailand in the early ‘70s. He holds advanced degrees in Theological Studies and Urban Planning as well as honorary doctoral degrees in Social Administration from Thammasart University in Thailand and Acadia University in Canada. He has received many honors for his work at the Human Development Foundation. In 2004, Her Majesty the Queen of Thailand presented Father Joe with a lifetime achievement award for his work in the field of protection of mothers and children.
7. What is the purpose of this event?
To support the HDF’s Education Programs, which include:
• 30 Slum Preschools in Bangkok (over 4,000 poor children enrolled)
• Over 1,000 Educational Sponsorships for the Poorest Children through high school and as far as their education can take them.
• The Janusz Korczak School of SE Asia for street children
• The Mokan (ethnic Sea Gypsy) Pioneer Education Program
8. Is this the first “Walk for Education”?
This will be the very first, and we believe it will grow in strength and numbers as an annual event.
9. Who are the participants?
Mercy Centre’s staff and children… corporate sponsors and their staff… local and international schools and their students… the general public… all are invited to participate.
10. What activities will be on hand along the route?
Festivities and entertainment will be happening non stop, including performances by HDF children, win-win games, magic shows show in a children’s area with giant board games and jig-saw puzzles, lucky draws, a music-dance corner, food stalls, even a children’s mini-soccer pitch.
11. Will there be refreshments, and extra facilities along the walk?
Yes, the participants can enjoy “pit stops” along the route with entertainment at most every turn in the road. Security will be on hand to ensure everyone’s safety.
12. How far is the walk?
The circuit is approximately 2 km. Most participants will walk a single circuit of 2 km. Some groups, however, may be sponsored on the basis of number of kilometers walked. These groups are welcome to walk as many circuits as they wish before the closing time at 11:00am.
13. Where is the starting point and the finishing point?
The starting point is the Lan Tawanyim at 6.00 am.
The finishing point is Lan Kijakam Banteong.
14. What kind of souvenirs will participants receive?
Everyone who joins the walk will receive a “goodie-bag” full of gifts from event sponsors, along with a certificate of participation.
15. How can I participate in this event?
Please contact OutLaurs PR, Khun Tom/Khun Rin/Khun Fang, Tel. 02-636-2610-2.
or at Mercy Centre : Khun Eat/Khun Yod, Tel. 02-671-5313 Ext. 262
16. How can I or my company become a sponsor?
For more information, please contact OutLaurs PR, Khun Tom/Khun Rin/Khun Fang, Tel. 02-636-2610-2. or at Mercy Centre : Khun Eat/Khun Yod, Tel. 02-671-5313 Ext. 262
17. How can I make donations to Mercy Centre?
There will be donation boxes available at the event. If you cannot attend but wish to make a donation, there will be sales of tickets for individuals at the Emporium. Tickets will also be available at the registration during the event.
For direct donation, here are details for bank transfer:
1. Standard Chartered Bank
AC Name: Human Development Foundation
AC # 001-002-95-193
2. SCB Bank
AC Name: Human Development Centre
For donation receipts, please contact Khun Yod/ Khun Ning at Human Development Foundation, Tel. 02-671-5313 ext. 262.
18. Who can I contact to ask for more information on this event?
OutLaurs PR & Event Management, Khun Tom/Khun Rin/Khun Fang, Tel. 02-636-2610-2.
Human Development Foundation-Mercy Centre, Khun Yod/ Khun Ning, Tel. 02-671-5313 ext. 262.
19. What should I do if I get lost at the event?
The most convenient meeting point is Lan Tawan Yim and Lan Kijakam Banteong (starting & finishing point). Also, along the route will be rest stops every 150 m. (approx.) with a staff to assist participants if they need directions or help of any kind.
20. Where can I have breakfast or lunch?
There will be free snacks and drinks available at the starting and finishing points.
21. Where can I find the restrooms?
Participants can find mobile restrooms located along the walking route with easily recognizable signage every 150 m. (approx.)
22. How can my company register for the event?
The company should appoint a designated coordinator who can fill in the proper form with approx. number of staff attending the event and send the form back to Khun Tom/Khun Rin/Khun Fang, Tel. 02-636-2610-2, Fax. 02-636-2613. or at Mercy Centre: Khun Eat/Khun Yod, Tel. 02-671-5313 Ext. 262
At the event, there will be 3 registration areas; school registration area, corporate registration area, and individual registration area. The representative from each participating company can sign in on behalf of their staff.
23. Are participating companies required to make donations?
The participating companies and their staff are encouraged to make donation of any amount (no minimum cost).
24. Are there printed materials of the event my company can hand out to help promote the event?
Yes, there are posters and leaflets that will be distributed to promote the event. The companies may request the number of posters and leaflets they need to put up and distribute on their premises and the organizer will deliver to them.
24. How may companies make donations during or after the event?
The companies are advised to designate a coordinator who collects registration forms and donations. A company donation may be made to Mercy Centre within 14 days after the event by contacting Khun Yod/ Khun Ning at Human Development Foundation, Tel. 02-671-5313 ext. 262.