While in Thailand, my fellow intern (Kylie) and I had the opportunity to take a weekend trip up to Isaan to hang out at one of the branch-off ministries of Servantworks called Breakthrough Thailand. The ministry provides mentorship for at-risk teenage girls while promoting family unity and community development. I encourage you to click on the hyperlink above and read more about Breakthrough and the incredible things they are doing in the lives of 13 teenage girls, their families and the community they’re living in!
You’ll see pictures below, but the landscape was unbelievable. When we got there we went out to see the (mostly) harvested rice fields as well as the sugar cane crops that were a few months from being ready to be harvested. The building and the village were both so fun to see, and so unique. I especially love the center’s motto- “Together we grow.”
We just so happened to go up on the weekend of the rice harvest. To celebrate the harvest we went out for dinner with the staff members and the girls plus some friends. We hopped into a pickup truck- 2 adults and 2 kids in the front seat, 3 adults in the backseat, and about 15 girls packed into the back of the open pick up truck. No safety laws here! We went to a restaurant where you cook your own food over a fire and it was delicious. Then we headed over to a mini Loi Krathong celebration at a nearby town. It reminded me of fair grounds- amusement park lights, tons of food and balloons, and a lot of teenagers. A lot of people followed the Buddhist traditions of the holiday by sending up their wishes and prayers via lanterns and candles. The celebration raged on with fireworks that were shot up between buildings and bursted into flame right above our heads. When I felt sparks coming down I asked one of the girls if it was safe to be shooting off fireworks so close to people. She responded with a laugh and said casually, “No probably not. People die sometimes.” Oh sweet relief, only sometimes! Living for the thrill I suppose. After being stopped by a couple groups of teenagers who wanted pictures with “farang” (foreign) girls, we all packed back into the pickup truck and headed home.
We were given the unique opportunity on our second day there to spend just a bit of time learning how to harvest. The village members were encouraging and laughed with us as we struggled. The coolest part was that we were in the field with members of the whole village who had joined together to help finish the harvest-even if it wasn’t their land. It was truly a blessing to be a part of it! We didn’t stay out long though- we were slow and were probably more in the way than anything.
I so wish we could have stayed longer and spent more time with the girls, but just the short time was enough to see how faithful God is to people who surrender their lives to Him! Enjoy the pictures. -E
(pictures to come when I have time to transfer them…you can always hop over to the original post!)