Poverty, Risk, and Exploitation
Despite having little education, children in the underdeveloped rural communities of Northern Thailand are expected to help provide. It’s no wonder they’re targeted by recruiters for the sex-trade or other dangerous work.
She’s fourteen-years-old and lives with her family in a rural village in Northern Thailand.
Her dad died of an overdose last year. Her mom works in the fields, making 150 baht ($5 USD) a day. As the oldest daughter, Nue is expected to help care for her three siblings. Her aunt offered her a job in a massage parlor in Bangkok. Nue is unsure what she wants to do when she grows up but knows she doesn’t want to do what her aunt does.
We empower Nue through
In theory, Thailand offers free education through 12th grade. Like many poor rural children, however, Nue can’t afford the cost of transportation to school and back each day. With the mandatory fees for uniforms, extracurricular activities, foreign language, music, and art classes, school is beyond her reach. She applies for a scholarship from The Freedom Story. She’s accepted! Nue’s new scholarship covers all aspects of her education: tuition, books, transportation, field trips, uniforms for each day, and more.
According to Harvard University’s Center on the Developing Child,
“the single most common factor for children who develop resilience is at least one stable and committed relationship with a supportive parent, caregiver, or other adult.”
Nue researches careers online during free time at our Resource Center. She talks with other scholarship students already in university and vocational school. She decides she wants to a be a nurse and finds a perfect program in Chiang Rai. Her mentor helps her apply for different scholarships to supplement the support she receives from her Freedom sponsor.
Our Resource Centers offer our scholars & other students 5,600 hours a year of:
Chinese & English classes
Music & art classes
When Nue was young, The Freedom Story’s Sustainability Project partnered with her mom. In our programs, her mom learned organic farming, took weaving classes, and started a silkworm farm. The silk her mom sells covers each month’s rent. She also joined a farming co-op that raises their own organic food and brings it to market.
Nue’s story is just beginning.
Now living in the bigger city of Chiang Rai, Nue continues to have community and resources to support her in university.