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It's hot and getting hotter. Welcome to March in Thailand.
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MARCH IN THAILAND

summer is here


The temperature is on the rise and the heat has brought humidity and some wicked thunder storms. Things are greener, but we are sweatier! Perhaps that's an over-share but we provide you with this detail because we are still learning the yearly cycle here. This will be our first hot season in Thailand - it's part of the learning curve!

With the heat comes summer holidays for Thai schools. The school break begins at the end of March. Daxon attends an international school and the British school calendar is observed. He may not be on break, but with less students and parents on the move in the morning, the traffic for us has become much more enjoyable! All of this will lead up to Songkran - Thai New Year - in the middle of April. The celebrations this year will be muted in respect for the late King Rama IX.
March began with a road trip to Kamphaeng Phet Province for Matthew and our friends Andrew Stockley and Zach Wylie. One of their language school classmates was marrying a Thai lady and they were invited to the wedding. It was a unique blend of cultures at this Franco-Thai Buddhist wedding and a great first insight into this part of life in Thailand. Part of the entrance ceremony is pictured above (left).

We have completed level 1 of Reading and Writing in Thai (last day of class is pictured above, right) and we're currently enrolled in level 2 (there are 4 reading and writing levels). Amber is finding that reading and writing is coming together quicker than the speaking courses did. Matthew - the talker - is finding the rules of reading and writing to be more challenging.

When it comes to language learning we often find ourselves wishing for more time. Balancing Daxon's school schedule, our alternating class schedule (currently Amber in the morning and Matthew in the afternoon), work, Zala, and everyday life, we feel as though study hours come up short. We're doing our best and on days when we are feeling low about it, God provides a morale boost. Just today we were talking with a Thai lady in a shop and she commented on our Thai. She asked how many years we've lived here. When we told her 7 months, she was surprised. It's fuel for the tank to keep on going!
March 22 was the UN's World Water Day bringing global focus on those who lack access to drinkable water. Since coming to Thailand we have been learning so much about the role that safe, clean, sustainable drinking water plays in family and community life. Imagine Thailand works with migrant schools in the border region between Myanmar and Thailand to provide students, families, and communities with safe, drinkable water.

This week (and this month) finished with an international school here in Bangkok presenting Imagine Thailand with the proceeds from a walk-a-thon where grade 3 students lapped the sports field while carrying 5 liters of water. Zach and Matthew were invited to a school assembly and were able to thank the students and note the grade 3's as a great example of engaging with global issues.

Learn more about Imagine Thailand's 2017 Clean Water Project initiatives HERE and see how you or your group could get involved.

LIGHTHOUSE UPDATE

visiting the Lighthouse Learning Centre


Matthew traveled down to Takua Pa along with our Imagine Thailand intern. Our intern is working with the Learning Centre for the next four months. It was great to see the expanded classroom capacity made possible through the modified shipping containers. Matthew got to put his English teaching skills to use (thank you Poland) and he was able to run around and play with the kids (thank you mended ankle).
The National Tsunami Memorial
The Lighthouse Learning Centre
P. Tak and P. Te' bring leadership to the Imagine team in Takua Pa. They are an amazing couple and it was inspiring to see the deep relationships they have built with the students and the wider community.

Seeing ground zero for the tsunami was humbling. Life in these coastal communities is still very much shaped by the events of December 26, 2004 and some communities never regained what was lost. The landscape itself was changed and this was driven home to Matthew when he had dinner with one of the students from the Learning Centre. She lives with her grandmother and their home floods every year. Dinner was eaten on a large outdoor tiled platform and their beds are kept off the ground by similar platforms. Even when floodwaters fill their home, they continue live there.

News reports and Hollywood films (The Impossible) give us an idea of what something can be like. Matthew's time in Takua Pa made this a much more human story. The banner picture at the top of this email was taken where the tsunami came through. The white pillar in the water is part of a detection system. It's a reminder of what happened. The tsunami took lives and changed others. We're so amazed by the work of the team at the Lighthouse Learning Centre and we invite you to pray for them. They're doing amazing things!
Twitter
Twitter
Website
Website
Matthew
Matthew
Amber
Amber
Matthew
Matthew
Imagine Thailand
Imagine Thailand
Getting involved is just a text message away.

Text GIVE to 647-360-8056 to make a one-time donation right now to our life and work in Thailand.

Text PRAY to 647-360-8056 to add your email to our prayer list and get prayer updates (separate from this newsletter).

Text NOW to 647-360-8056 to get a text back with some of the areas we are praying about right now.

PRAY WITH US

we believe there is strength in numbers

  • with the change of pace that Thais will have over summer holidays, we're looking for ways to connect while locals have more family-oriented time. Pray for insight and creativity.
  • we're all relatively healthy right now. Please continue to pray for health in our home and the Wylie home.
  • super-human study powers as we continue to learn how to read and write in Thai.

CANADIAN residents can partner with us through the International Missions department of the PAOC to receive a tax receipt.
AMERICAN residents can partner with us through our American sister organization to receive a tax receipt.
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