New Blood was founded in 2003 and has been one of Room to Grow’s partners since 2011. One of the largest migrant schools in the area, it provides a full education (nursery to post-ten) to 450 children and shelters 172. Most of these students come from the surrounding agricultural area although many are also from families who work in the many factories around Mae Sot.
The boarding house is provided with some dry food assistance from Mae Tao Clinic but it is not enough to feed the high number of boarding students or provide lunch for the day students. Students have proven themselves to be exceptionally resourceful in earning money and sharing its benefits with each other. Older students, for example, often take day labor in nearby fields and buy shampoo and soap for other boarding house students with their wages. Each young boarding house child is paired with an older child who acts as their older brother or sister, taking special responsibility for looking after them. This arrangement seems to be valued by young and old alike – the young for the individual care it gives, and the older ones for the feeling of being grown-up and responsible.
In 2011, Room to Grow provided funding to send 35 children from the boarding house to a nearby Thai school, as well as deliveries of rice and yellow lentils and a small contribution to boarding house food. We also funded one infrastructure program to repair the electric wiring and build walls for one classroom which didn’t have any. This year, 2012, we are working together with Thai Children’s Trust to increase the level of food support that we provide.
Take a look at our New Blood album for more photos of the children and our projects.
[Photo: New Blood nursery building, 2012]