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Fern Hill/St Andrews Trip Report

4 – 16 March 2017

This year we had the privilege of hosting two schools in one trip, as Fern Hill School from Canada and St Andrews School from USA combined students for their Chiang Mai adventure. This dynamic group of students went through a solid variety of VSP activities on offer, from Thai and Jungle Cooking and Muay Thai, to two nights away in the secluded Ban Mae Mae for a service trip. A longer trip than usual and a mix of students from different countries and schools made this experience all the more memorable, with characters that were confident and outgoing from the moment they got out of the airport. Every activity was made that much better by the personal touch the students and staff brought to them with their personalities.

The trip to Ban Mae Mae was probably the point where this shone through the most, with the students and teachers putting in a fantastic three days’ work full of smiles and laughs. In this time they managed to build a road to the classrooms as well as repaint one of the older buildings, adding a beautiful mural of aquatic life. The positivity and hard work of the group was evident throughout the project and the results spoke for themselves; a stellar job by a group of truly unique individuals.

VSP has been taking student groups to the school in Ban Mae Mae for several years now and you can really see the difference that has been made by our hardworking students – perhaps most noticeably in the large, concreted play area complete with permanent seating for spectators (or just hanging out!). It is not uncommon to find rural schools where the only outdoor play area is a muddy or grassy field, which is not very suitable in the monsoon season. By adding plenty of bright colours – such as with the mural painted by Fern Hill and St Andrews – and a better area for play, we are very proud to have given something meaningful to the school in return for their hospitality.

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