A group of eight Oundle Sixth Formers travelled to Thailand for a community service trip focused on working with disabled children and their families during the October Half Term holiday.

The community service took place under the guidance of the Christian Care Foundation for Children with Disabilities in Thailand (CCD). Oundle pupils spent several days working with the children alongside CCD staff and paid a visit to Baan Rajawadee Girls Home, run by the Thai government. They also visited one of the community-based rehab centres to experience life in rural Thailand.

At Rainbow House, Oundle pupils played games and did art projects with the children. The work with Rainbow House and CCD culminated with an outing for approximately twenty children on the Skytrain – Bangkok’s elevated subway – a remarkable event to help raise disability awareness and give the children an exciting new experience.

In addition to charity work, the ten day trip also included a visit to the beach town of Pattaya and a tour of Vajiravudh College and Harrow International-Bangkok. Pupils took a local Thai cooking class and visited a local market, where they tried their hand at traditional Thai dishes and tasted some unusual local fruit.

Finally, they learned about Thai history at Wat Pho temple, the Jim Thompson House, and the ancient capital city of Ayutthaya.

Prior to the trip, pupils organised a fundraiser for Rainbow House and CCD and returned with packs of Christmas cards designed by the children at Rainbow House to sell and continue to raise money to support this life-changing work.

Founded in 1986, CCD oversees a variety of projects to help local children and young adults with disabilities in Nonthaburi, north of Bangkok. The organization runs four centres providing day care for children from government care homes for disabled children. CCD also oversees Rainbow House, providing residential care and physical therapy to disabled children to give them a chance to live somewhat independently in group housing owned by CCD. The organization also works directly with families of disabled children through community-based rehabilitation centres to raise awareness of disabled children, create parent support groups, and to teach their families to provide physical therapy for their children.