- Mar 15, 2003
Chiang Mai ToyRide has had a working relationship with the Thailand Border Patrol Police for a number of years. The Baan Mai Pattana Santi School is one of many schools operated by the police serving remote mountain villages. In July of 2013 we co-sponsored a charity ride event to this school with our friend Alan Pratt, of Thai Bike Tours. See Dirt Bike Ride to Mae Na Chon.
Since that time, CMTR learned that the school was seeking a way to fund and build a small two room clinic to serve the school and the people of the village of Baan Mai Pattana and another small mountain village 7 km away.
We conducted a number of meetings at this remote location and were told how they needed a place for emergency treatment for small injuries and acute illnesses. The Border Patrol Police and a teacher have training in administering emergency services. If necessary patients would then be transported to the Mae Chaem Hospital approximately 25km through the mountains.
Also, health care workers from the town of Mae Chaem periodically schedule visits to the village to give immunizations, checkups for the woman, and other services. They previously had to go 'home to home' as there was not a suitable facility. CMTR was looking for a worthwhile, lasting project to complete and decided "WE CAN DO THIS!"
And so we did. The clinic was built using local suppliers and builders to the specs supplied by the school. It is a two room unit and has been completely outfitted by CMTR. This includes beds and bedding, storage cabinets, medicines and supplies. Office and computer desks and chairs, a donated computer, bookshelf, office items and supplies including the pictures and clock on the walls.
The intent of the CMTR Committee was to complete the clinic without a lot of 'fanfare' and simply hand it over to the school and community in a simple presentation and not as a formal event or toy ride as such. Two days before that was scheduled, the Border Patrol Police (BPP) informed us they were having no part of that! We were met by the BPP District Commander and staff, local government representatives, teachers and always best of all, the children. CMTR committee members and Alan Pratt were given a warm welcome and a great show of appreciation.
The welcomes and the obligatory introductions were made and CMTR presented a plaque for the school and pictures to the police and teachers.
We were then entertained by students in with their traditional ethnic Karen dancing.
The children had waited patiently and it was finally time to present the 50 kids with CMTR backpacks, snacks and other items we had brought along.
It was soon time to leave the school and the new CMTR clinic in the dedicated hands of the school teachers and staff.
The village of Baan Mai Pattana Santi is located approximately 200km from Chiang Mai, a three hour drive. It is an ethnic Karen (Kariang) village. They have their own language and culture. Most of the children we talked to at the school did not speak Thai. They are not considered Thai citizens. Many Karen are Christians. Please visit: Border Patrol Police provide learning opportunities for children in isolated vicinities.
As our project progressed, the school pursued further funding in hopes of replacing some of the aged and decrepit classrooms The BPP Headquarters in Bangkok allocated funds they had received from private donors to tear down some of the old, and build new classrooms at this location. We feel that the efforts made by all the volunteers and events over the last two years helped to bring renewed attention to this school. This is a win/win situation for the children and the community as a whole. We are pleased to be part of it.
We have also been told that upon the completion of the new classrooms, there will be a "Royal Visit" by one of the King's daughters. We have been invited as the BPP say they also wish to "tell the story of Chiang Mai ToyRide". Link: Thai Royals and the Border Patrol Police
Chiang Mai ToyRide is not finished yet..........