Monday, January 24, 2011

Compassion in action

My first week of travels back to Southeast Asia in early December 2010, took me to Thailand. I spent a couple of days in Bangkok before heading up to Chiang Mai that would serve as my base for a 1-day visit to the north in Fang to visit the Compassion child I sponsor: Jairak Ja-U.
Our 1st meeting. Me holding the traditional bag his mother made for me.

I really didn't know what to expect since I had only just started sponsoring Jairak Ja-U a couple of months prior. The two other children I was sponsoring had both dropped out of the program within a month of each other, and Jairak was the recommended boy to replace them.

He couldn't have been a better match!

Posing in front of the "Christmas flowers" (Poinsettias).

The shyness was very evident, yet understandable. We exchanged gifts and asked a few questions (translated, of course) before getting a tour of the hostel where he is living. He seemed very happy to have met me. It was very special since many children don't ever get to meet their sponsors except through letters and photographs.

I think the best part of the trip was going to his high school to see his classroom and his best friends. It was a pleasure to be able to meet them and pray together before saying good bye.
Standing with his school mates & friends.

I will cherish that day, despite feeling a little under the weather in the morning. It was so adorable when we said goodbye as Jairak called out, "Good bye. See you tomorrow!" in English.

Visiting the local hot springs in our matching hats (which we both like to wear).

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