By Jaehui Jeong
Soccer game at US consulate in Chiang Mai
On one of my first Fridays here in Thailand I travelled to Chiang Mai with the other volunteers to take photographs of a soccer game between the Warm Heart children and emergency workers. At the game I realized how well respected and important Warm Heart is around here. I really enjoyed myself that day.
Children’s Christmas trip to Promenada Mall
Around Christmas time I joined other volunteers and Warm Heart staff for a trip to the Promenada Mall in Chiang Mai with all 40 children that live at Warm Heart. I photographed them performing a dance routine along with them singing songs that they rehearsed many times prior to the event. The children really enjoyed themselves that day: they had a meal in town and played at an indoor playground. This made me happy to see the children have so much fun. It also reminded me of being a young child in Korea.
New Year’s Celebration at Warm Heart (photos by Anne Bannister)
The New Year’s event was a very big celebration here at Warm Heart, even bigger than Christmas. We had many important guests, including some people who were making donations to Warm Heart. There were about 100 children, including the WH kids and the children from other WH staff, extended family and friends. There was a really nice dinner for the children, the guests, the volunteers and staff. I took photos of everyone receiving gifts, the children performing, and Michael and Evelind receiving a donation. My favorite part of the night was the fireworks. This was my first time to experience such a large new year’s event. I had a lot of fun and even got a large stuffed animal as a gift.
Singapore visiting students
In January a group of students from Singapore came to Warm Heart for an overnight stay and to help with various projects. I helped by taking photographs while they taught children, helped with the biochar project and enjoyed a campfire at the end of the night. I was very impressed to see high school students volunteering because in Korea not many students would want to volunteer.
Construction project in Mae Pang village
This was the first construction project that I’ve ever worked on and it really changed my perspective on volunteering. It was the hardest I’ve ever worked in my life. I had never done work like this before in Korea. We had to take apart the cement and re-do a kitchen to make it more accessible for an old lady. I did a lot of mixing cement by hand; in my country this would all be done by a machine. Even though the work was exhausting, it was very rewarding to see grandma have a new kitchen.
(Jaehui Jeong was a volunteer, she took most of the photos.)