In the last 5 months, Ford Motor Company (Thailand) Ltd and World Vision Foundation of Thailand (WVFT) had unveiled the “Thailand Clean Water Community Project” across 13 schools in WVFT’s project areas of Makham, Kang Hang Maew and Pong Namron in Chanthaburi province, central Thailand. Having won a US$ 200,000 grant from ‘The Bill Ford Better World Challenge’, the project installed water filter system and built drinking water production plants for schools. The water is also used to grow the school’s agricultural produce through ‘Agriculture for Lunch Programme’. The toilets and sinks are also repaired to improve the children’s sanitation. Some 3,300 community people are set to benefit from this project, particularly the students who will enjoy nutritious lunch from the agricultural produce grown by the school.
In February, Mr John Maynard, Ford’s Area Manager of Stamping Shop with Mr Thammasak Apibanworrakul, Employee Relations and C&B Operation Manager brought 50 staff to join the handover of the drinking water production plant at Ban Pan Mor School in Pong Namron district, Chanthaburi province. Mrs Chitra Thumborisuth, WVFT’s National Director and Mr Sarit Chimpalee, Ban Pan Mor School’s Director gave guests warm greetings.
Joining the activities were the Ford volunteers who split into 2 groups, with the first group engaged in ‘Agriculture for Lunch Programme’ activities at Ban Pan Mor School. They transported 2,000 mushroom spores into the nursery, planted lemon trees, installed the water system for growing crops as well as cleaned the chicken coop and pig pen. The second group went to the nearby Ban Jang Wang School to pour concrete and make a cement floor at the front of the drinking water production plant and also painting the school’s canteen.
Ford executives and staff also observed the processing of oyster mushroom by various schools which have congregated at Ban Pan Mor School to do the demonstrations. The mushrooms are grown within the grounds of each school, which are processed to give them added values. These include Ban Khlong Bon School’s mushroom crackers and fried mushroom cake as well as Ban Poh School’s mushroom chilli paste. Guests also watched the demonstration of bottled drinking water production and management practices, which will ensure Ban Pan Mor School can continue to sustain the project in the long-run.
“Our operations focus on sustainability, which is aligned with WVFT’s work in tackling local people’s poverty through a network of partners. On behalf of Ford Thailand, I’m delighted that this is one of the 2 projects to win ‘The Bill Ford Better World Challenge’ out of the 35 projects submitted by Ford globally. The other winning project was from Ford in England,” revealed Mr Thammasak.
Mrs Chitra Thumborisuth, WVFT’s National Director said, “Thank you Ford Thailand for giving poor students a chance to enjoy a good quality of life. They may become productive citizens who can thrive equally with others in society and grow into an important force for the country.”
Today Ban Pan Mor School is gearing up to apply for a Food and Drug Administration certificate to bottle its water and sell them at an affordable price. The income earned from its sale will become a revolving fund for the school to further sustain the project.