Rainbow-Scuba Scholarships since 2006
As the old Chinese proverb goes:- You give a poor man a fish and you feed him for a day. You teach him to fish and you give him an occupation that will feed him for a lifetime. So it is through our Student Sponsorships that we hope to improve the lives of young people enabling them to break out of the cycle of poverty, support their families and be role models to the next generation
Vocational Training Scholarship 2019-2021
Three young people were recently selected by SET to receive 3 year scholarships
Niithiwat Saitthong. His parents separated many years ago. He lives with his mum. She works as a general (unqualified) assistant is a hospital physiotherapy unit and earns little money. She has taught Nithiwat what she knows about Thai massage and at weekends he works in an old people’s home, giving massages. He only earns tips, but it helps pay his daily expenses for school. When he finishes M6 he would like to study at a military academy.
Panuwat Kongchu: He lives with his mum. His dad died three years ago. Also in the family is a grandfather. He has kidney failure and must attend hospital three times a week. The mother must care for him and therefore can’t work fulltime. She works part-time in a hairdressers. At weekends Panuwat cleans the house of teacher’ house and gets about 200 Bt each week.
Ms Naphaporn Phengphan: she lives with her parents. They used to buy vegetables wholesale and sell them at a fresh market. They had a reasonable income, but in recent years their income has dropped considerably. Naphaporn’s younger brother has a serious lung disease and recently had to have major surgery, so the father had to stop working so he could take care of the boy. The family now cook curries at home which the mother sells at a market, with Naphaporn’s help. He gets up at 4am every morning to help cook before he goes to school. He says he is always tired.
Vocational Training Scholarship 2016-2018
Now 10 years since our first scholarships we are pleased to be able to help three young people from humble backgrounds with further studies. Two students were assessed by the college as being needy (based on a home visit) and individual diligence (based on their high school grades). One, Sattamt is a former Kiriwong novice monk and as such his scholarship is guaranteed by SET without investigation.
Jiraporn is 19 and studying Accounting. 2016 is the last year of her three-year course for a Vocational Certificate (OVC). She is an only child and the family home is in an outlying district of Nakhon Sawan. Her parents make charcoal to sell in bags on the side of the road. Their income would be very uncertain, but probably only 200-300 Bt per day.
Pechayud is 18 and in his first year of a three-year OVC course in Building Construction. He lives in the city with his mother (parents divorced). She is a maid earning 300 Bt per day.
Sattamt is 17 and the former Kiriwong novice. He is in his first year of a three-year OVC course studying Auto Mechanics. His parents are rice farmers but they own no land of their own.
Vocational Training Scholarship 2013-2014
Todsapon parents are laborers earning about 35,000 Bt pa. (Approx. 1,100 USD). As far as Todsapon knows, his parents work in Bangkok, but he hasn’t seen them for over 8 years. They dumped him in the monastery when he was only 10 years old and they left Nakhon Sawan. With the help of our scholarship he is now studying Masonry in the two-year Higher Vocational Diploma course at Nakhon Sawan Technical College.
Academic Scholarship 2010-2012
Somchai came from a Hill Tribe community. Our scholarship enabled him to completed a 3 year Teacher Training Course. In the picture opposite he is receiving his final stipend from the university president at Rajabhat University. He received good grades throughout his course and is now teaching in a Hilltribe school in the far north of Thailand.
Vocational Training Scholarships 2006-2009
We sponsored 2 students:- Songpon Boontar and Atipa Tongkon. Ms Atipa Tongkon studied for an Ordinary Vocational Certificate (OVC) in Computer Studies at Nakhon Sawan Vocational College. Before graduation she and her three siblings relied on their mother's income as a casual laborer (about 5,000 Bt per month = 165 USD), which after paying house rent and buying food for five people did not leave a lot for Atipa's education. Now she has a job and is able to support her family.
Songpon's parents are rice farmers with only a little land from which they get one crop per year. He has one older brother, 21, who didn't even finish his primary studies and is now a casual laborer in Bangkok. With our scholarship Songpon completed an Ordinary Vocational Certificate in Auto Mechanics at Nakhon Sawan Technical College and now has a job in a local repair and maintenance garage.
For Somchai, Atipa and Songpon these scholaships were a real chance to break out of a cycle of poverty and we wish them every success and happness in the future. We hope Todsapon will also make us proud...
The SET Foundation
The SET Foundation was established in 1994 by Phra Peter Pannapadipo, a British Buddhist monk. Phra Peter lived in a rural monastery in a northern province of Thailand. Through his life and work at the monastaries he came face to face with many cases of family hardship, wasted talent and lost opportunities.
To find out more about the work of SET please visit their web site. To learn more about SET's founder and inspiration Peter Robinson (and for wonderful insight to Thailand, its people and customs), we recommend these two books by Peter Robinson:-
Phra Farang: An English Monk in Thailand - the story of a successful businessman who at forty five, gave up his comfortable life in London to ordain as a Buddhist monk in Bangkok.
Little Angels - the real-life stories of the novice monks and reflects the lives of many young people in Thailand who are trapped in the vicious cycle of poverty, broken homes, illiteracy and drug abuse. For many SET is a life line which Rainbow Scuba & Tour is proud to support.
For more details of the work of SET and how you can help