- Title: Temporary Thai tsunami orphanage becomes a permanent home
- Date: 19th December 2019
- Summary: PANG-NGA PROVINCE, THAILAND (RECENT - DECEMBER 2019) (REUTERS) ***WARNING: CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** BAAN TAN NAMCHAI (KINDNESS HOUSE CHILDREN'S HOME) ORPHANAGE TSUNAMI ORPHAN AND SECRETARY-GENERAL OF BAAN TAN NAMCHAI FOUNDATION, WATANA SITTIRACHOT, LOOKING AFTER CHILDREN IN CANTEEN CHILD EATING COOKIES WATANA HANDING MILK TO CHILD, CHILD DRINKING VARIOUS OF WATANA SPEAKING TO TEENAGERS (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) TSUNAMI ORPHAN AND SECRETARY GENERAL OF BAAN THAN NAMCHAI FOUNDATION, WATANA SITTIRACHOT, SAYING: "I came to stay in Baan Than Namchai after Tsunami. And teacher Rotjana, the founder of the foundation, has helped and supported me till I graduated from university and given me the opportunity to go study abroad. And now I come back to work for her." PLANTATION FARM VARIOUS WATANA AND CHILDREN CULTIVATING MUSHROOM IN NURSERY MUSHROOMS IN BUCKETS WATANA AND BOY WITH BUCKETS WALKING OFF VARIOUS OF ORPHANAGE CHILDREN PLANTING LEMON PLANT FOREIGN STUDENT VOLUNTEERS DIGGING GROUND FOR LANDSCAPING VARIOUS OF WATANA LOOKING ON AS THE WORK IS IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) TSUNAMI ORPHAN AND SECRETARY GENERAL OF BAAN THAN NAMCHAI FOUNDATION, WATANA SITTIRACHOT SAYING: "Initially, Baan Than Namchai foundation looked after children who were directly affected by Tsunami. After that, our organisation grew bigger and gained the trust among private organisations and the government who helped with coordination to get other juvenile cases to us." VARIOUS OF CHILDREN ON SWING BOAT CHILDREN PLAYING WITH SAND VARIOUS OF TEENAGERS PLAYING VOLLEY BALL (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) TSUNAMI ORPHAN AND SECRETARY GENERAL OF BAAN THAN NAMCHAI FOUNDATION, WATANA SITTIRACHOT SAYING: "The children who had been affected by the tsunami during that period of time were mostly afraid to get into society or face anything unfamiliar. But the children in the foundation these days are more open in expressing themselves, they are not afraid to confront unexpected situations." CHILDREN IN TUITION CLASS CHILDREN AND VOLUNTEER TEACHER IN CLAY SHAPING CLASS CHILDREN WORKING WITH CLAY VARIOUS OF PIONEER OF THE ORPHANAGE, ANGKANA CHATREEKUL, TEACHING MATH TO A BOY BOY WRITING ON NOTEBOOK (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) SENIOR STAFF OF BAAN THAN NAMCHAI, ANGKANA CHATREEKUL, 47, SAYING: "He (Watana) understands, he was once a child affected by the tsunami. He understands the loss these children are facing, as he runs this place. It was a very good foundation laid by Rotjana (late founder). If someone else had taken up this job, we don't know how much they would understand the children at this place." VARIOUS OF ANGKANA ENTERTAINING CHILDREN AND VOLUNTEERS IN EVENING RECREATION GATHERING CHILDREN AND VOLUNTEERS DANCING (SOUNDBITE) (Thai) SENIOR STAFF OF BAAN THAN NAMCHAI, ANGKANA CHATREEKUL, 47, SAYING: "We went from tents to buildings. We started with floor boards made of plywood from used coffins that we took from a temple. The tents were taken from Bangkok from my head office then."
- Embargoed: 2nd January 2020 00:37
- Keywords: Thailand Tsunami anniversary children orphanage
- Location: PANG-NGA PROVINCE, THAILAND
- City: PANG-NGA PROVINCE, THAILAND
- Country: Thailand
- Topics: Disaster/Accidents,Earthquakes/Volcanoes/Tsunami,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA001BAN72O7
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: This orphanage has been Watana Sittirachot's home since 2004, when a deadly tsunami took hundreds of thousands of lives, including his family members, in one of the biggest natural disasters in recent history.
Now 27, Watana, has been running the Baan Than Namchai -- or Kindness House Children's Home -- for two years, since the founder Rotjana Phraesrithong died.
"Teacher Rotjana, the founder of the foundation, has helped and supported me till I graduated from university and given me the opportunity to go study abroad. And now I come back to work for her," said Watana.
The 9.15 magnitude Dec. 26 earthquake triggered a tsunami across the Indian Ocean 15 years ago, killing more than 230,000 people. Thailand, Indonesia, India and Sri Lanka were among the worst hit countries. Some 5,400 people were killed in Thailand, among them about 2,000 foreign tourists.
The Baan Than Namchai orphanage was initially set up days after the tsunami hit, to temporarily shelter 70 "tsunami children". But what was meant to be a temporary setup of two months, turned into a permanent organisation that has provided refuge for hundreds of children over the years.
"We went from tents to buildings. We started with floor boards made of plywood from used coffins we took from a temple," said one senior staff member Angkana Chatreekul, who has been with the organisation since it first started.
The orphanage was turned it into a permanent home for children back in 2012 and it currently has 92 young charges, supported by donations from abroad and public fundraising.
Children at Baan Than Namchai spend their days in tuition classes with volunteer teachers and also participate in extra curricular activities like growing vegetables and mushrooms in a farm within the compound.
The balanced lifestyle has helped the children, especially those who had little or no parental guidance since young said Watana, "the children in the foundation these days are more open in expressing themselves, they are not afraid to confront unexpected situations," himself the poster child of what the orphanage hopes to achieve for their young charges.Production: Prapan Chankaew, Juarawee Kittisilpa, Phyllis Xu, Travis Teo)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None