The King's Birthday Activities at Sarnelli House

December 5 of every year has special significance for the Thai people. It is the birthday of their much loved and revered King. Since the King is the Father of all the Thai, it is fitting that it be Thai Father's Day. (Mother's Day is celebrated on the Queen's Birthday on August 12). On these birthdays, the Thai make merit for the Royals, and also each village has development or clean up projects they do on that day. The King is renowned for His royal projects all over Thailand, geared to help the rural poor.

This year, Sarnelli House hit the jackpot. First, a contingent of over 20 teachers from Ruamrudee International School in Minburi (RIS - an international school owned and run by Redemptorists) bussed up with a load of goodies to play with and teach the kids. Fr. Leo Travis CSsR, could not make it because Father Leo was hospitalized with a possible case of shingles. The teachers launched their program after breakfast on December 5, and spent the whole day teaching kids handicraft, hygiene and planting gardens. They played games and had a Christmas party for them. On the morning of December 6, they joined the children at their Mass and gave a generous donation afterward, which we will use for the children's Christmas party. The bus departed afterwards, and we hope to see them visit us again! (Some pictures of RIS visitors are below)

The second group that gave up their holidays to take care of the children was doctors and nurses from Srinakarin hospital in Khon Kaen. Accompanying them were three teams of dentists, most of them from Bangkok, with mobile dental equipment to extract teeth, drill and fill cavities and clean teeth. It took them two full days, and neither the priest, nor the staff, not to mention the children, ever saw a team work so hard and cheerfully. Some of the assistants made balloons into animals, etc., to keep the littler more apprehensive group of rodents occupied! The dentists and their assistants also taught the kids dental hygiene. They serviced nearly 130 children, plus AIDS infected adults who work for us. The adults would never be allowed in a dentist's office if it was know they had AIDS.

Mr. Prasert Jiragunsombat and friends donated all the gloves, masks, etc., that the teams needed. Doctor Bunjira Anugun led the team, with Drs JaithipSongwasin, Somphit Thammarangrong and Patemapon Pungchanchaigun, and their dedicated staffs were outstanding. Dr. Somphit from Srinakarin has promised to come once a month to take care of any of the children's dental needs. We are truly blessed to have such sacrificing and generous people volunteering to help the kids. The children and staff are very grateful for their care and concern.


Thank you very much!

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