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Friday, February 24, 2017
Imaginative project helps tsunami orphans grow their own dinners
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¬†An imaginative project supported by the Pattaya Orphanage Trust UK is providing orphaned and vulnerable children in tsunami-hit areas of Thailand with a square meal a day in school. 'Lunch farms' are the cultivation of crops and the rearing of livestock on or near school sites, which the teachers and students can tend and manage. One lunch farm is even farming prawns with rainwater captured from the roof of the school. Working through dedicated local delivery partners on the ground, the Trust is currently ensuring that 1,500 schoolchildren from eight lunch farms are receiving at least one nutritious meal a day. The 'lunch farm project' is proving so successful that money is urgently needed for a further 30 in the region. Many children in the region were orphaned after the disaster, and unable to be looked after by their extended family. Many adults lost their livelihoods, particularly if they fished, or worked the land which is now infertile. This left many children suffering from malnutrition. Everyone benefits and every one learns a skill which will be useful for the children's future. Growing food for self-sufficiency is just one of the many rehabilitation programmes now getting under way as the world marks the anniversary of the tsunami this Christmas. So far the Pattaya Orphanage Trust UK has raised over £46,000 but another £35,000 is urgently needed for a further 30 lunch farms in the Krabi and Phang Nga provinces of south west Thailand. Already the new charity Schoolchildren for Children has chosen the lunch farm project to benefit from its successful fundraising initiative to encourage pupils at UK schools across the country to keep active and healthy through an organised fitness event. Schoolchildren raise funds, of which half goes towards their schools and the other half to disadvantaged children overseas. Although the Pattaya Orphanage, based in Pattaya, Thailand, was not affected directly by the tsunami, the Trust's remit extends to all disadvantaged and vulnerable people throughout the country. "When the Tsunami struck last Christmas, we were keen to establish as quickly as possible effective ways of distributing emergency funds raised. We wanted to make sure they went directly to the children and young people who needed it most," says Andrew Scadding, Chief Executive of the Pattaya Orphanage Trust UK. "We believe that supporting lunch farms is one of the most appropriate ways of ensuring that vulnerable young people can remain in education for as long as possible. Education is a positive route towards a secure job and permanent escape from poverty. "We are now looking into new projects to help children overcome the emotional trauma of experiencing such a terrible tragedy. Many of them have been damaged emotionally and need close care and counselling to help them overcome their fears." For further information see:
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