iCare – where are your money and efforts going?

Peter Assimakopoulos

Last year, the ISB community banded together to make a difference in many lives. Lives that were directly impacted by COVID and others that have been living a life of poverty in the slums. 

Your money and efforts helped iCare make a significant difference. 

  • About half a million baht was donated in total from the ISB community and this is the result of all the money raised through fundraisers throughout the year. 
  • Over 600,000 people were fed in slums and construction camps. 
  • 10 micro businesses were started by single mothers. 
  • 2,000 blankets and jackets and sweaters were distributed in northern Thailand during the wintertime. 
  • iCare distributed food to 600 people along with supplies for young mothers and infants.
  • Over 160 bicycles were also distributed to school children across districts which have helped kids find an easier way to school. 

A short story about Chutima

Statistics are all well and good, but each of those numbers represents lives impacted. The result of which is harder to quantify. One such instance comes to mind from the end of the school year. As the school year was winding down, some of the middle schoolers at ISB initiated a drive to collect bicycles to be donated to those in need- which ended up having a bigger impact than any of us realized, particularly in the life of one of our 15-year-old scholarship students, Chutima.

When Chutima was 13, her mother suffered a stroke that left her almost completely paralyzed, except for the ability to blink, which she quickly developed into a means to communicate with her daughter.  As her mom was caring for Chutima, her younger sister, 5, and her elderly grandmother, overnight Chutima became an adult, responsible for the welfare of the household, having to make decisions that no 13-year-old should have to.

 For 2 years Chutima managed the family, caring for the physical needs of her mom and the rest of the family, as well as ensuring her sister went to school, at the expense of her having to drop out of school. All of this is on the disability pension her mom received of 800 baht per month, and the social welfare funds her grandmother received of 600 baht for a total of 1,400 Baht monthly.

Once iCare became aware of this distressing situation, they started doing their best to find a way to get Chutima back into school, as well as get the help this family so desperately needed. As the pieces came together, the very last obstacle was the bus fee of 650 baht per month to get to and from school. Thankfully one of the bicycles that were collected by ISB was a perfect fit for her, enabling her to bike to school daily. We are proud to report that she’s back in school, working hard to catch up on the 2 years she missed out.

So on behalf of Chutima, and thousands of other students like her, we would like to say thank you to each and every one of you in the ISB community for changing her world for the better.

We are excited to work with iCare again this year as they help bring about long-term lasting change to communities in need across Thailand. 

If you would like to know how you can help, please contact Peter Assimakopoulos (petera@isb.ac.th)

Thank you, 

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