Green Activity

Pass It Forward for the Children

Chumphon

Pass It Forward for the Children
Pak Song, Amphoe Phato, Chumphon
 
Whether it is enjoying deliciousfood at the restaurant, staying at the guesthouse and just absorbing the tranquil surroundings, or tirelessly working in the garden, you have helped the children more than you can imagine.
            In the midst of theverdant rainforests of Pak Song lies TCDF Eco-Logic, a magical oasis where visitors and volunteers can engross in the natural beauty of Southern Thailand while doing something for a worthy cause. TCDF Eco-Logic was established with the aim to raise funds to support theThai Child Development Foundation (TCDF), and the income earnedfrom the restaurants or the accommodation goes directly to the Foundation.
            Within the premises of the TCDF Eco-Logic are several kinds of ecological gardens, guesthouse, restaurant, and a specialschoolfor children with special needs. TCDF strives to be self-sufficient and sustainable, and the produce from the ecological gardens and mushroom farms on the premises are the main ingredients in the food for the guests at the restaurant, as well as for the children at the school. Operatedby inspirational and loving hosts with the help of international volunteers with beautiful hearts, TCDF Eco-Logic provides visitors with a chance of a lifetime to support the special needschildren, who are indeed very special, by being a part of this special community and working in the garden.
            Although volunteers do not get to teach or take care of the special needschildren directly, the work and efforts volunteers put in the gardens is unquestionably serving to pass the love and positive energy forward to these children and their bright future.
 
 
ABOUT TheThai Child Development Foundation
The Thai Child Development Foundation (TCDF) was founded in 2004 to help the children within the area of Amphoe Phato of Chumphon province by offering scholarships and facilitating medical care. TCDF also established a special schoolto provide education and health assistance to children with special needs, whether it is children with Autism, Down’s Syndrome, learning disabilities, or those with physical challenges. Other than getting personalised education and physiotherapy, these children gradually acquire skills and abilities to support themselves in the future. These children come to school four days a week, in which they engage in various activities and vocational trainings; such as, working in the garden and mushroom farm, painting, sewing, and working in the restaurant. Onthe weekends, the special school turns into a Creative Learning Centre, where local children learn English, play sports, and enjoy a variety of arts and crafts activities.  

One of the creative activities at the special school is the recycling programme, in which the children collect recyclable materials from their home and sell to TCDF in exchange for points. Apart from getting a prize after earning enough points; such as, a bicycle or a soccer ball, the children also get to learn about the importance of recycling. This programme helps making recyclinga habit where children can also practice and share this practice at home with their families.

Activities
Tending the Ecological Gardens
The ecological gardens are the main part of what makes TCDF Eco-Logic sustainable,and there are numerous kinds of vegetables, fruit, and herbs cultivated here, ranging from tomato to star gooseberry, and pineapple, just to name a few. To ensure the efficient use of resources, the gardens are carefully designed with several systems; such as, anaquaponic system, or drip water irrigation system. Tasks at the gardens include planting new trees, watering, weeding, and harvesting the fruits and vegetables.
 
Taking Care of the Animals and Picking Mushrooms
TCDF raises a variety of animals ranging from chickens to ducks, fish, and horses. Volunteers help in the daily routine of animal care; such as, feeding, cleaning the fishpond, collecting the chicken eggs, and washing the horses. Once the mushrooms that are cultivated in the mushroom farm mature, volunteers can help pickthe mushrooms as well.
 
Maintenance
TCDF is constantly maintaining theexisting materials and adding new projects to the premises. Volunteers can help with building frames for the garden, repairing fences, painting the walls, and decorating the guesthouses or the school.
 
Spending Time with the Local Children
On Saturday, the children who live nearby come to the school in the TCDF premises,and volunteers can spendtime with the children through various activities; such as, teaching English and arts, playing games, and watching the children perform.
 
Example of aDaily Schedule
8.00 a.m.: Breakfast and meeting to determine what needs to be done for the day.
9.00 a.m.: Work onthe garden.
12.00 p.m.: Lunch.
1.30 p.m.: Maintenance work around the garden.
5.00 p.m.: Relax.
7.00 p.m.: Dinner.
Remark:
·         The above schedule is only an exampleof what is to be expected and is subject to change, depending on the circumstances.
·         Volunteers at TCDF Eco-Logic start working every Wednesday through to Sunday and get Monday and Tuesday off, in which they can relax within the premises or visit several of the nearby attractions.

Nearby Attractions
Ban Khlong Ruea Homestay
Located about one kilometre away from TCDF Eco-Logic, Ban Khlong Ruea Homestay offers visitors a wonderful experience of living with the locals and learning about their 4-level agricultural method, as well as enjoying trekking in the forest and other ecotourism activities.
 
Namtok Heo Lom
Around 3 kilometres from TCDF Eco-Logic is Namtok Heo Lom, a beautiful waterfall situated in theKhuan Mae Yai Mon Wildlife Sanctuary. The over 80-metre-high majestic waterfall with water running all year round is embraced by lush vegetation of therainforest, where visitors can enjoy birdwatching and exploring naturealong the scenic nature trail.
 
Phato Watershed Conservation and Management Unit 
ThePhato Watershed Conservation and Management Unit is located around 9 kilometres from TCDF Eco-Logic. The origin of thePhato River, this area features several activities for nature lovers; such as, walking the nature trails amidst the dense forest, bamboo rafting along the river, and discoveringthe rare Bua Phut or Rafflesia kerrii, a red flower with a diameter of around 80 centimetres that is believed to be the world’s biggest flower.
           
 
GPS:N 9° 45.462' E 98° 42.266'
Accommodation:Dormitory or bungalow within theTCDF Eco-Logic property.
Recommended length of stay:Minimum of one week is required.
Prices:Volunteers stay in the dormitory for free, but visitors who prefer to stay in the private bungalow will pay for the accommodation at a discounted price. Special discounts on delicious Thai and Westernmeals at theTCDF restaurant also applies for volunteers.
Remark: Please check with TCDF Eco-Logic for more information on the prices.
 
Contact Information:
TCDF Eco-Logic
71/2 Mu 4, Tambon Pak Song, Amphoe Phato, Chumphon 86180
Tel. +668 6172 1090
www.tcdf-ecologic.jimdo.com
volunteerprojects@thaichilddevelopment.org