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My Fourth of July was amazing.  Along with a couple of my American colleagues and dear friends (Scott Friedman and Jana Stanfield) here in Siem Reap we concentrated on being the best of Americans and demonstrating what caring, compassionate Americans have to offer to the less advantaged people in the world. We began the day with a visit with Theany, Director of Future of Khmer Children   where she provides supplemental education in English, computers, sewing, traditional Khmer arts, crafts, music and culture to 322 children from the local villages.  Together with her and her staff, we spent the morning agreeing...[ Read More ]
Still catching up on my recent travels -- this time about my visits in Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai. First stop in CR was to visit the Good Shepherd Sisters Girls Home an hour south, in the town of Phan. Sister Lena is still in charge there, but otherwise there has been turnover in the Sisters assigned to that location. One replacement, Sister Suwannee, is now on site. Another will be coming soon. The school still is not full. That troubles me. What with the excellent living conditions and education they provide, and with the support of the local families...[ Read More ]
Upon returning to BKK from Nong Khai, (which is in the north *east* of Thailand, not the north *west*, as one of my astute readers pointed out to me) I was met at the airport by Sister Louise who escorted me to her facility in central Bangkok. This a very large facility that I had visited on a prior occasion. On this one property they have a preschool for nearly 100 children ages 3-6 from the nearby slum community. They have a pre- and post-natal care center for about a dozen unwed mothers, a live-in shelter for about 65 at...[ Read More ]
Nong Khai is an important town located right alongside the Mekong River in the northwestern part of Thailand, known as Isan, a mostly agricultural region. Vientiane, the capital of Laos, is right across the Freedom Bridge. People here speak their own dialect of Thai. And, they face the many challenges of a rural life, impacted by the vagaries of nature, often resulting in various degrees of poverty. The Good Shepherd Sisters have three facilities in the Nong Khai region and do a great deal to assist the people here. Their main center, and convent, is located in the center of...[ Read More ]
Hi All, Busy time in Bali to begin this trip. Three-day off-site meeting. 30 people. No opportunity for an advance design. It was all on the fly. Arrived Sunday afternoon. Met with Nengah and Yati right after that to plan the first 1/2 day. Began the meetings first thing Monday morning (no time for jet-lag recovery) and designed and led the meeting on the fly after that. It worked. Strategic Planning this year was all about their "budget crisis". And, it was/is a crisis! Annual budget IDR 6 Billion. Reliable donations IDR 2 Billion. Annual shortfall - IDR 4 Billion....[ Read More ]