It’s been awhile, but we hope you didn’t forget about us! Everyone is back home in the US, but for some reason the heat and humidity followed us...
It’s been a little more than a month and a half since we left the Church of the New Covenant, which was home for us for 3 weeks. We miss the great home cooked food, the various little critters, and the constant film of sweat on our faces.
Most importantly, we will miss the people that made this trip so wonderful. We are so glad to have worked with the community of Don Kang to complete a project that we all wanted. Below are some pics of the station being used in the past few weeks!
You may have noticed some sweet signage and a touch of color on the distribution station! The phrases of the sign were agreed upon between us and Khem, and we really stand behind the message.
Right after the project, we traveled back to Mahidol University to do a few presentations and various meet & greets with some of the university members. We are ever so grateful for their hard work and support.
Then us students spent a few days in Bangkok to do some sightseeing, which included temples and super expensive and bougie malls. We even got to meet up with Khem for a little bit too! (He can’t get enough of us). This was followed by some more traveling to places like Chiang Mai, Beijing, Japan, Bali, etc. Trust me, we got a lot of frequent flyer miles this summer. As a group, we split up here and there to travel, but we were never really that far from each other because our group chat was always poppin. More pictures below, which also includes Khem doing who knows what in Arkansas.
Personally, for me, I’ve had some time to reflect since the project ended, and it’s really hard to put into words how much the trip changed me. Out of the many things I’ve learned, I realize that our finished water distribution station is not the end of our project. Our project continues every time someone uses our station. There is a history and story behind it. One of college students stressing out and having fun making something happen with the community. With such a stressful project, I am glad we got to make fun memories that didn’t really involve numbers and drawings. Memories like playing basketball on a super bouncy rim just when the sun is setting, learning the wrong way to play card games, kids running all around and making little rock castles, or even staying up all night before opening doing a leak test. Those are the things I am going to remember the most, and they necessarily won’t be obvious to those using the station, but that’s OK.
There is also a future of this station, one that is a continuing relationship within the community of Don Kang. This station, by itself, won’t magically build a strong community. It is the people that use this station who might want to take some ownership and responsibility to keep it running for the years to come. I see no issues with this because of the commitment and work from our NGO and the many helpful and gracious community members. I wish next year’s team to Thailand the best of luck and hope they realize our station is more than just delivering water, it is a symbol of a growing bond between the people of Don Kang.
In the next few days, lookout for a wild and fun video that summarizes all the craziness, laughs, and smiles during our time in Don Kang!
Over and out,