A trip to naval ship Maj Stephen W Pless
(Foreground L to R) Lenny
Holden, GPSL director, Captain Joseph F. Souza and Ien Fernandez, GPSL
Logistics Officer, lead the visitors aboard the USNS Maj Stephen W Pless.
Late last month a US Navy container ship, the USNS Maj Stephen W
Pless was in the area. Tracy Cosgrove from the Melissa Cosgrove Childrenís
Foundation received an invitation to bring some children and teachers for a
private tour of the ship. The following is her account of the adventure:
to R) Tracy Cosgrove and some of the children gladly accept the food
donation from Captain Joseph F. Souza and Lenny Holden, GPSL director.
The navy was in town and the place was buzzing. At 7 p.m. I received a phone
call from Lenny at ESC and Global Protection Security and Logistics Co.,
Ltd., asking if I needed any frozen meat for any of the projects I am
helping. I know ESC management very well and they have been a great
supporter of the projects.
So we arranged a date with Capt Joe Sousa (from the USNS Maj Stephen W
Pless). He agreed that we could bring some children and teachers along for
what would turn into a very exciting day.
kids had a brilliant time and really enjoyed pretending to steer the boat.
When were taken around the ship, the kids couldnít believe how big it was
and how so many tanks and vehicles could fit on the ship. We all drank water
that the ship had made from sea water in its on board water plant, then we
had ice cream in the officers mess. The kids had a brilliant time and really
enjoyed pretending to steer the boat.
The captain and staff then showed us the frozen meat. Wow, you should have
seen it, there was so much food! We thought it was going to be 100 kilos of
frozen meat; however, it came as a great surprise when we were told it was
actually 300 kilos of meat!
I was told some of the food would be delivered the next day to Sattahip and
the rest to Bangkok; however, there was nowhere the frozen food could go in
Bangkok, so off to the Amari Watergateís freezer where they kindly kept it
until a large chest freezer was bought - with a lock on it!
Global Protection Security then arranged transport to move the frozen food
from the Amari Watergate to the temple in Bangkok.
It just goes to show what can be done - a simple phone call made so much of
a difference. Itís not always about money; sometimes itís about getting
donations in kind and passing them on. Without the help of all the people
involved this couldnít have been possible. It took a little bit of effort
and look what happened. The 3 projects now have food. Ok for Bangkok there
is still along way to go, as we need rice, drinks, milk, water, etc., but
now the boys there have food.
The temple in Bangkok got 2 freezers full of meat, the Baan Hinwong School
received an ice cream chest freezer of food and the labour camp nursery
received a small amount - because again there was nowhere to store the food.
Thank you to all involved. However, all credit, recognition and thanks must
go to CAPT Joe Sousa and the Crew of the United States Naval Ship Maj
Stephen W. Pless who generously offered, provided and made this donation.
MCCF is a not for profit non charitable foundation that has projects in
Bangkok, Pattaya, Burma and Pakistan.
Regentís Round Square Sleepover an IDEAL(S) event
Sally and the other
prefects debrief with the students in the Roundhouse.
Year 11 Environment Assistant Pillar Leader
Friday February 27 was the Round Square Sleepover! As always, it was an
excellent day, with a fantastic climate which was suited perfectly for
the sleepover. All the participants from years 5-8 were excited and
ready to face the new challenges. 70 students were guided by a group of
magnificent leaders; the head students, the prefects and the assistant
with a difference for the Adventure challenge!
The sleepover started with ice breakers organized by Jake, which
involved a variety of games in which the students interacted together
and got to know each other. The next event was an adventure activity,
tug-of-war, where everyone tried their best to win the game. It was only
for the champions of the game who could feel the sensation of the
The night walk was one of the best events of the Round Square sleep
over. Each group leader directed their fellow blind-folded students into
the woods and frightened them. Students learnt how to help each other in
difficult situations, and to experience what it is like to live with a
We also had an environmental activity. Students had to answer
environmental questions, but by only using their bodies to create the
letters to form the answers! Not only did they learn about different
ways of recycling various things, but also to cooperate and communicate
and putting it into an action.
The final event of the sleepover was the treasure hunt - a leadership
activity. Once again, everyone was shouting with joy and was overwhelmed
by the desire to find the treasures. The treasure hunt was all about
thinking and working out the clues as a group. It required leadership
skills to guide and cooperate with the team members to find the
We had a final ceremony by taking photos of everyone who participated in
the sleepover. I am sure that everyone who participated in the Round
Square sleepover enjoyed it, and it will be left as a good memory for
everyone. Many thanks to all the teachers, head students and pillar
leaders for organizing this fantastic event.
A group photo of all the
Year 5, 6, 7,
and 8 students who participated in the RS Sleepover.
Groups make the shape of
the letter that
is the correct answer in the Environment challenge.
Sattahip offers summer school classes
Children sign up for
summer courses in Sattahip.
At least some Sattahip school children are cheering as the
municipality is making available free tuition and meals in some subjects
during the long months of the summer break.
On March 9 Pairoj Malakul Na Ayutthaya, Sattahip municipal chief, gave
details of the summer school project to the students at the Physical
Education Hall at Singhsamut School.
He said that students could now gain knowledge during their long free
time in the summer when teaching in English, math, computer and art will
Not only does this allow the students to benefit more from their free
time but also to prepare them for the next academic year, he said.
The project is for fourth graders up to eight graders, from March 9 to
31 for 360 students and will use facilities at Singhsamut School.
Akkaradej Noochuay, deputy chief of Sattahip Municipality and project
coordinator, said that this was government policy for local officials to
organize educational programs to teach traditional culture and new
knowledge to build strength in our youth today.
It appears hundreds of
children will go to summer school in Sattahip this year.
Who needs ears to win?
Hearing impaired children take part in charity footrace
Rachada Chomjinda and her
husband present the check to Fr. Michael.
On March 6, the Pattaya Orphanage organized a special event for
their deaf residents and students. It was all about the youngest kids
from kindergarten, who took part in a footrace.
Since the children canít hear the encouraging cheers, the spectators and
volunteers expressed their enthusiasm with gestures. The cheerleaders
from kindergarten also spared no efforts to add to the exciting
I had the honor to present the medals and prizes to the children. It is
hard to describe the feeling that overwhelms me when I look in their
happy faces. Itís events like these on which they can prove how capable
they really are.
On the same day, the orphanage received a check for 1.1 million baht
from Human Help Network (HHN). The money will be used to repair old
power lines, install new ones and assemble fire escapes. Rachada
Chomjinda, director of HHN Pattaya, and her husband, who is the
organizationís vice-president, handed over the check to Fr. Michael. The
funds were raised at a very successful football tournament, which was
recently arranged and sponsored by Thai Garden Resortís owner Gerrit
Niehaus and German football mogul Reiner Calmund.
All kids, teachers,
organizers, volunteers and guests gather for a souvenir picture. The
winners are assembled in the center.
Fr Ray Organic Farm
deemed a huge success
PR Director Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya
The 750 underprivileged children and handicapped young people cared for
by the Fr Ray Foundation in Pattaya are now enjoying the organic produce
from their Redemptorist owned farm.
This farm, where the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya, the Rotary Club of
Watford in the UK, the Pattaya International Ladies Club and other
charitable institutions recently supplied top soil, a tractor and
farming equipment, last year supplied half of the fruit and vegetables
used in the seven kitchens of the Foundation, and the aim is to increase
this to 80% this year with hopefully supplying all next year. They also
have a number of small lakes which produced differing kinds of fish,
essentially reducing the food costs.
Brendan Kelly, president of Jomtien Rotary said on Tuesday, when
congratulating the organisers on their success, how very much he and his
fellow Rotarians welcomed this news. He went on to explain, ďWe in
Rotary help many humanitarian causes, but it is always extremely
gratifying to see an ambitious project like this succeed, where it is
self sufficient and will hopefully help to feed needy children with good
healthy food for many years to come.Ē
Brendan added, ďWe believe this to be a major achievement as not only
will the Foundation soon be self sufficient for fruit, vegetables and
fish, but these are cultivated organically, an internationally
recognised method of rearing more healthy crops. A sign of truly
remarkable dedication in helping the needy and deprived children of
Pattaya. We in Jomtien Rotary are indeed proud to been associated with,
and support, this wonderful success. To us, and I think everybody, (it
is) a really worthwhile long term investment.Ē
The farm is situated near the Tesco-Lotus supermarket on Sukhumvit Road
and is staffed professionally by four people who rotate the crops
regularly, using no chemicals for cultivation. The lakes, into which
10,000 baby catfish were introduced two years ago, are now being
harvested, together with other varieties. It is hoped that in the near
future these will supply the full fish needs of those living at the
All of these 750 youngsters live at the Fr Ray Foundationís various
sites in Pattaya and are fed, clothed and educated by donations received
locally and from around the world. However, they too are victims of the
current international financial crisis, and with assistance dropping,
fresh sources of income are being sought.
Blind students enjoy lunch
Sopin Thappajug (5th from
left), managing director of the Diana Hotels Group, and Nittaya
Patimasongkroh (3rd from left), chairwoman of the YWCA Bangkok-Pattaya
Center, and others present school supplies to Aurora Sribuaphan (4th
from left), director of the Pattaya Redemptorist School for the Blind.
One hundred thirty students with vision impairment were dancing
and having their haircuts when the YWCA Bangkok-Pattaya Center and the
Diana Hotels Group provided lunch and school supplies to the Pattaya
Redemptorist School for the Blind.
Sopin Thappajug, associate judge at the Chonburi Family and Juvenile
Court and managing director of the Diana Hotels Group, led hotel
employees and Nittaya Patimasongkroh, chair of the YWCA Bangkok-Pattaya
Center, to offer lunch to the students at the school on March 12.
The children were treated to, and indeed took part in, singing and
dancing something they obviously had a lot of fun doing.
School supplies were also donated to school director Aurora Sribuaphan
Then there was lunch for the students, enjoyed by all in the happy
atmosphere. The Jutamas Beauty School brought in hairdressers to give
the students free haircuts.
The school is one of 11 schools for the blind in Thailand, established
in 1986 by Father Ray with the support of Aurora, who is a visual
disabilities social welfare official and the current school director.
The school has 170 boarding students.
chairwoman of the YWCA Bangkok-Pattaya Center, talks with the children.
former chairwoman of the YWCA Bangkok-Pattaya Center, serves food to the
Jutamas Beauty School
brings hairdressers to give the students free haircuts.
Children obviously enjoy
dancing to the music.
Students, teachers and
benefactors form one big rumba line.