Mae Sai School for the Blind Receives Support from Rotary Club of Thai Town and U.S. Civil Affairs Team
On July 27, 2022, the Rotary Club of Thai Town, Los Angeles, and the U.S. Embassy Civil Affairs Team donated a collection of items and sponsored a lunch for students at the Mae Sai School for the Blind. Donated items included three Perkins Brailler machines, Fender-donated ukuleles, basic hygiene supplies, and food items. Local rotary clubs also in attendance included the Mae Chan Rotary Club and Chiang Rai Rotary Club.
Rotary Club of Thai Town Officers Koy Jaiyong and Sam Prompichai have a deep personal connection to this project as they are from the Mae Chan and Mae Sai area. “I grew up in Mae Chan so being able to come back and do this is a labor of love,” said Koy. “These projects reach a lot of people in the area and there’s truly nothing like the feeling of giving back to the community. You can’t imagine how happy I got when I saw the students smiling and saying thank you. It’s very touching.”
The club has sponsored activities with the Mae Sai School for the Blind since 2018. Most recently, the Rotary Club of Thai Town donated customized walking canes and blankets for each student. During that visit, Koy identified the school’s Brailler machines required repair and began a fundraising campaign to refurbish and purchase new machines. Due to COVID-19, Rotary Club of Thai Town members were unable to personally deliver their donations until now.
Since 2007, the Rotary Club of Thai Town in Los Angeles District 5280 has served Thai Town and the Los Angeles Thai communities. Chartered as part of Rotary International, the club works with international partners, such as the Mae Sai School for the Blind, to foster peace and good will.
The Mae Sai School for the Blind was founded in 2016 with Her Royal Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn presiding over the opening ceremony. The school serves visually impaired children from kindergarten to sixth grade. The first school of this program was established in 1981 in Khon Kaen under the Royal Patronage of His Majesty the King and later extended into other provinces across Thailand.
This donation is the first of several collaboration projects planned between Rotary International and the U.S. Embassy Civil Affairs Team. The Civil Affairs Team has previously provided humanitarian assistance in Thailand through donations of firefighting equipment to address seasonal fires and medical supplies during COVID-19.