It´s Saturday, but at DEPDC Chiang Khong, it´s business as usual. In fact, not only do our engines not stop over the weekend, they run at maximum power!
It´s 6 A.M., and as the sun slowly makes its way up into the sky, the early morning silence is broken by the sounds of chatting, cooking, giggling, washing, etc. The girls are up and ready to begin a new day full of activities and surprises.
Today is Wan Dek, Thailand´s National Children´s Day, a day to celebrate childhood and raise awareness about the significant role children play in the development of the country. This message is extremely important because today´s children are no less than tomorrow’s world leaders. Children are the greatest potential of a nation, although unfortunately, many parents and governments do not always understand this well enough. There is a popular saying that goes, “You reap what you sow,” and it could not be more appropriate to describe the role of education in a country. Provide every child with basic quality education and sound role modeling at home, and you are ensuring a bright future for your country and its people.
But Children´s Day is not only about education and its benefits, it is also about the rights of children to enjoy their childhood, to have fun, to be looked after, and to receive love from their families. And so to celebrate the beauty of childhood, schools, community-based organizations, and local government buildings open their doors on this day to allow children to let loose, play, and enjoy. Here at Sathang District (Chiang Khong), everyone was called to gather around the local governor’s office building where activities of all kinds were organized for the enjoyment of children and their families: from a dance contest to a motocross exhibition, a remote controlled aircraft show to an inflatable bouncy castle. Children enjoyed these activities and ran across the compound collecting sweets from every stand and eating ice cream and iced drinks to beat the heat.
DEPDC Chiang Khong did not miss the opportunity to be present at this local event and make our work known to the community. Our girls set up a booth where we welcomed all manner of visitors. Of course, we were well aware that our main audience would be children, so to ensure that they had a very sweet day, we brought with us plenty of candies and small toys to give away. Also, the girls at the centre helped organize all sorts of games which both children and adults enjoyed. These games included musical chairs and another in which children had to fill up bottles of water floating in a bucket using only one hand. The playful challenges of these games brought smiles to many children’s faces.
And as the sun got stronger, everyone slowly began to make their way back home feeling very satisfied for having given our local children and youth a very fun and enjoyable day!!