While 76% of children from wealthy parts of Thailand complete their upper secondary education, only 19% of children from the poorest parts do so. (2019 Thailand Education Fact Sheet, UNICEF)
Although Thailand offers free education through 12th grade, there are many associative costs (like books, uniforms, and transportation) that keep attending school out of reach for many children and youth. Others might attend school yet drop out after the 9th grade (the end of compulsory education in Thailand) to apply for low-paying jobs in order to help their parents put food on the table. This decision severely limits future employment opportunities and promotes generational cycles of poverty.
At Creative Life Foundation, we are proud that 86% of our scholarship participants have graduated high school, compared to only 6% of their parents.
Anne, a scholarship recipient, contributed to our successful graduation rate earlier this year. She has been in our program since the 7th grade and dreamed of one day going to university.
My first memory of Anne was that she always wore a smile and had a special connection with Plaar, her mentor. When asked about her relationship with Plaar, Anne replied, "She is like a second mother to me. She always helps—offering support, encouragement, and advice when needed."
Anne remembers the daily challenges she experienced before receiving support from the Creative Life Foundation.
"My parents couldn't afford the textbooks needed for school, and some days there was no food to eat..."
"After receiving support from the foundation, things got better. We no longer struggled for food and could even set money aside for emergencies."
Today, we celebrate as Anne begins her first year at university, studying business management.
This year we had the privilege of seeing 5 of our students graduate high school, and like Anne, begin their first year of university. Currently, Creative Life Foundation is proud to have 23 of our students working towards their bachelor's degrees.
Thank you to everyone who gives financially and helps girls like Anne stay in school, get connected with a mentor, and stay on a pathway to freedom