Sustainability in Thailand
Our Thailand program is our longest standing international project. The partnership was conceived of back when co-founder Dave Batstone met Kru Nam when visiting Thailand while doing research for his book (also called Not For Sale). The project has grown significantly from its inception, and has now incorporated many aspects of sustainability into its functioning.
In 2011, Not For Sale bought a large plot of land adjacent to the Children’s House to use for farming. The farm is now thriving, with pigs, hens, fish, a variety of vegetables, some tropical fruit, a large rice paddy, flowers, and trees. Additionally, it is completely organic, as the staff makes organic fertilizers and herbal insecticides.
The children are very involved in the farming activities. For example, different children are assigned as “managers” of the hens, collecting and counting their eggs daily. The children are also very involved in raising the pigs.
A small shop, which sells some of the fruits and veggies, among other items was also established on the property. A “bank” was also created along with the shop so that the children could learn the value of money. Finally, the farm has also allowed the children and staff to sell some of their produce at the local market.
You may have also seen that we are currently in the process of installing solar panels, thanks to our partnership with Panels for Progress, at the Children’s House. This is a huge project for us, and will help further improve the lives of the stateless children we assist.
The installation should be done in a week or so, and will allow the Children’s Home to be completely energy independent during the day. Their is also a possibility of getting batteries in the future that would enable the house to be energy independent at night as well. This will save Not For Sale Thailand money and allow them to grow their programming to help more children. It will also allow the Home the capacity to build a computer lab with internet access for the children.
Overall, these sustainable aspects of the Children’s Home are ways in which we are working to improve the lives of stateless children and ensure that they learn the skills they need to succeed in life. Because no child should be for sale.