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Big, Bigger, Best?

The Luang Prabang Orphanage School has always been our main goal and yesterday our time with Andrew Brown (the ex-pat Aussie who now manages 3 orphanage/schools) and the 600 children (ages 3-19) was rich with experience and sharing. The simple fact that there are more photos than the austere Angkor world heritage area says plenty about the value of human contact over bricks and mortar. We spent half a day on site with a foray to a local restaurant for lunch breaking it up from nervous touring around the 8 dorms, the kitchen (today we are going to be cooking lunch – their one meal per day for a weekend; 2 during the week), general serving area that becomes a flurry of excitable collecting when the bell rings and the play areas (one 3 seat swing, a basketball court with broken back board, some concrete table tennis tables, the garden and ablution blocks).

After lunch it was play time, the gifts came out, Dash got his hair done, Rob signed a memorandum of understanding with Andrew and we laughed together. The 600 children come from 3 main ethnic groups (Hmong, Khmuic, Lao) and while a little tatty around the edges they radiate appreciation. Andrew is in partnership with the Lao government who provide the basics (which slowly is becoming less basic as he has become recognised for his work after 8 years) and they provide the teachers and minimal utilities assistance. The aim now is for Andrew to secure as many sponsors as possible for the high school graduates so they can go to university. If they graduate, they get full employment by the government… a good deal!

Right now, we’re having brekky in the Joma café, created and run by an American ex-pat (think bagels, coffee, waffles) and it is here that we meet our driver. Also we spent some time yesterday wandering amongst the grounds of the Hoxieng Wat where monks were gardening and we were in awe of the beauty… no doubt we’ll see more…

ok gunna try to upload some photos but not totally confident as internet service is refreshingly (and a bit frustratingly) intermittent… oh well, the net isn’t everything…

signing off from LFHS camlao 2015blog 8 blog 8a blog 8c blog 8d blog 8e blog 8e1 blog 8f blog 8g blog 8h blog 8i blog 8j blog 8k blog 8l blog 8m blog 8n blog 8o blog 8p blog 8q blog 8r blog 8s blog 8t blog 8u blog 8v blog 8w blog 8x blog 8y blog 8z blog 8z1 blog 8z2 blog 8z3 blog 8z4 blog 8z6

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