A Facebook post made our return to the Bamboo School possible. Boxes of cereals were being given away and we were able to get 450 kilos of them. The first thing that we thought of was to bring them to the Bamboo School, in Bongti, Kanchanaburi, near the border of Myanmar and Thailand.
The Bamboo School of Kanchanaburi is one of the places that we always want to go to. Over a hundred orphans between the ages 6 months old to 16 years old are living together in this unique orphanage, school and clinic. The children are mostly from the Myanmar side of the border and others are from the neighboring villages who were abandoned by their parents. A passionate and loving Australian lady named Catherine Ruth Riley-Brian runs the orphanage. She is known to her wards as Momo Cath, Momo means Mother in Karen language. She has been operating this place for over 15 years and has been relying on the generosity of people and God’s grace. Each child has his/her own story to tell, all of which are equally heartbreaking and yet the children of Bamboo School have a positive outlook in life.
When Bernie gave Momo Cath a call and told her that we will be bringing 400 kilos of cereals, she was so happy to hear the good news. The adventchores team led by Ali Bernie Buga-ay along with the other members – Arpha Vida Buga-ay, Elcid Quinto, Glenn Steward Buga-ay and together with Karlo Diel of Yanhee SDA Church, left Bangkok on Wednesday midnight of August 7, 2014. Along with the cereals were some clothing that we were able to gather. Another friend, Cherry Novie Lou Catipay baked some cookies to be given the children. We arrived at Bamboo School in the early morning of August 7. The kids were at school and Momo Cath was left with two children. One is a one year old baby girl with an eye defect, named Soy-Fah. Her unwed mother tried to flush her down the toilet. Momo Cath was able to revive the baby on time but her eyes were infected. The other child is a blind, deaf and mute boy named Johann.
Momo Cath was pleased to see us and the bags of cereals that we brought for them. We also gave them money for soy milk which was donated by the Yanhee SDA Church, through the generosity of Doctor Ismael Naypa. We learned that day that they were down to their last sack of rice and with more than 100 children to feed that wouldn’t last long. The thing about Momo Cath is – she doesn’t just feed the children under her care. She also tries to share whatever they get to the people in the village, so their supplies don’t really last that long. She has taught the children a valuable lesson and that is to share whatever blessing they receive. Her faith in God is unwavering – she believes that they will always get provisions whenever they need it.
In our next trip, we will be bringing school supplies that the children will be using for another school year. We will also be conducting a free clinic in cooperation with the International Department of the Yanhee Hospital in Bangkok. As long as Bamboo School remains to serve the children in Bongti – the adventchores team will remain its partner in ensuring that these children can continue to have a meaningful and fruitful life and future.