The week started when Zak joined the volunteer team here in Sangkhlaburi. Zak was  joining us after spending 2 weeks on another of our volunteer experiences – our elephant conservation programme in Surin. It was quite a trip, in the past week Zak had traveled from Surin, in east Thailand, down to Bangkok, and then headed west to Sangkhlaburi.

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After a hectic and fun-filled night on the famous (or should that be infamous?)  Khao San Road, the backpacker and party central, it was time to head to Sangkhlaburi. Traveling the width of the country – from near the borders of Cambodia in the east, to very close to the Myanmar border in the west, Zak got to take in a good portion of the diversity that Thailand has to offer.

This week we have been working at our children’s center building project. It was very hands on work, and Thailand is starting to heat up very quickly after the colder months here. So between mending the bamboo fence, building shelves and desks, the boys earned a well deserved rest under the cooling fans… and some rests even turned into full naps!  All this went on under the watchful eye of our building coordinator extraordinaire, Tee and project coordinator Za Za…. We also had two little helpers, Happy and Cherry, who came in very useful when Zak, and another of our volunteers Tom, couldn’t cut it!

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Also in town we had a volunteer group were are part of a month long tour of Thailand, taking in Bangkok, Kanchanaburi and its vast array of temples, safari’s, historical landmarks and, of course, bustling bar scene. They then went on to Sangklhlaburi, where the group helped lend a hand on a variety of local community projects, and took in the sights, sounds and smells of this gorgeous, serene and diverse market town. When the group wasn’t working around the community, they were trekking through the jungle, water rafting and, for the first time, taking part in local Muay Thai boxing match at a festival in the nearby town of Huay Malai. Unbeknownst to two guys in the group, Tom and Dec, their tour guide had entered them in to the contest! They both took it in good spirit and decided to give the crowd the best match they could. Tom came out victorious, both were a little exhausted, but very proud of themselves. Great job guys!

Ali - Sangkhlaburi Volunteer Coordinator

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