Welcome to Baan Dada
Baan Dada is a Children’s Home and community economic development center located on the Thailand/Burma border. Baan means “house” in Thai and Dada is Sanskrit for “brother.” Baan Dada is home to approximately 60 disadvantaged or orphaned children.
Baan Dada started in 1994 as an agriculuture project, but quickly transformed into the community service project that it is today. Some of the projects (besides the Children’s Home) that we are involved in include an eye care outreach program, a health care outreach program, and the building of a technical college.
THE HOME WE HAVE CREATED
The children’s home was started in an effort to protect the growing number of orphaned and disadvantaged children in the area. Sangklaburi borders Burma (Myanmar) where many refugees and migrant families moved to this area due to poverty, disease, and political repression by the Burmese military Government. Baan Dada is now home to almost 60 children.
Baan Dada children’s home and community services is a project of the Neohumanist Foundation. It started as a boys’ home in Huay Ma Lai village, Sangklaburi, Kanchanaburi province in 1994, in an effort to protect the growing number of disadvantaged children in the area. Sangklaburi borders Burma (Myanmar) where many refugees and migrant families moved to this area due to poverty, disease, and political repression by the Burmese military Government.
There is a Dada (Dada is a Sanskrit word meaning ‘Brother’) at the home who are responsible for the development of the children, the home and many community based projects in this area.
The main objective is to empower the children through education, formal and non-formal. They are encouraged and taught many skills, from playing musical instruments, sewing, fixing motorbikes, art, languages and technical skills. The children are taught to respect all people, creatures, religion and to practice vegetarianism. This is based on the Neo Humanist’s philosophy “love for all created beings in this world”.
The home also provides jobs for single Mothers, and local families who help care for the children, assist with farming, construction and weaving projects. Baan Dada is an independent community based project that supports the people in the surrounding areas. It has initiated several community services, and livelihood projects.
The home is proactive in helping itself. We are doing this by selling hand-drawn cards and bookmarks by the children, planting rubber trees for future harvest, and performances by the children of cultural dancing and music. Of course, we also welcome support from volunteers and donors!
LOCATION AND BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Baan Dada is situated in Huay Ma Lai. This is a remote village nearby Sangklaburi in the north-western part of Kanchanaburi province in western Thailand on the border with Myanmar – approximately a seven hour drive from Bangkok. Huay Ma Lai is situated in a beautiful natural setting near one of the few remaining rainforests in Thailand , however the political situation in Burma has greatly effected this area. The village is a home to a population that consists not only of Thais but also largely of Karen and Mon coming across the border. These Karen and Mon are persecuted by the Burmese military dictatorship and many have been driven from their homes to seek refuge in Thailand.
These so called hill-tribes are not fully recognized as Thai inhabitants and therefore don’t have the same rights as the Thais. They face major obstacles in acquiring adequate health care, education, and employment opportunities. To protect the social, political and economical well-being of Thailand they are not allowed to leave the area without permission of the government.
Ecological destruction has changed the face of the area following construction of a dam in 1982, which generates power for use in the area and major cities. Local villages faced mandatory relocation and lost their traditional land and jobs.
Most of the non-Thais has a low level of education and is living in impoverished conditions. They are presently dependent on bamboo and thatch for shelter and often persist in illegal logging to sell or use in building, increasing the serious stress on the local eco-system. Lack of employment, proper medical care, education and sanitation has reduced family life to a struggle for survival in this remote, undeveloped area.
The Neo-Humanist Foundation is a non-profit social service organization registered with the Thai Ministry of Social Welfare. Its aims are to contribute to sustainable development of the individual, the community and the environment. The Neo-Humanist Foundation is inspired by the philosophy of Neohumanism as propounded by the philosopher and visionary Shrii P. R. Sarkar in India.
The staff of the Neo-Humanist Foundation are dedicated full time volunteers who work for specific projects. Other local and international temporary volunteers contribute to the project’s development.
“All that humans see externally in multiplicity is intrinsically One. Here all blades of grass, wood and stone, all things are One. This is the deepest truth.”
Come and learn about the home we have created!