A Child's Dream
Sombat working hard on studying English, pictured above is a shot taken while he was working on an english assignment.
When Sombat was 8, he was already speaking Thai fluently and writing Thai well. Even though playful, he was a very good child who enjoyed learning new things.
Sombat on his graduation day at Chiang Mai Rajaphat University.
I am thankful to God for His Grace and love that He has shown me through the many people who have poured out their hearts for me, helping me to gain an education and showing me love and care. There are many out there who are given the opportunity to receive an education, but many have allowed it to slip through their fingers, which in my opinion, is such a waste.
When I was a young boy, before I was under the care of House of Hope, I could remember very clearly the children who were around my age, living in the same area who had more money than my family and were able to go to school. At that point of time, I did not understand what the other children would do in their schools, so I thought to myself that maybe going to school seemed like much fun. I wanted to go to school to see what my friends were doing but I did not have the chance to go to school, due to my family's poor financial circumstances. It was only after my father passed away that my mother asked me if I wanted to stay at House of Hope, as she knew that I would be able to get a chance to gain an education there in order to better the future prospects for my life.
It took me two weeks to make the decision to enter House of Hope, leaving behind my mother and village. In the beginning, I missed my mother terribly, and making new friends did was really hard at first. I never had to do anything while I was living with mother as my mother always patiently helps me to do things. However, it was only after staying at House of Hope that I learnt how to live independently as I was trained to sleep and rise early, to do my own laundry, take care of my own personal hygiene, and taught so much more life- skills. I had to do everything by myself and it has certainly benefitted me greatly.
I remember clearly the first day that I went to school, it was really fun but it was just a matter of days before I got bored of going to school. This was because I was not able to speak in Thai before I was enrolled in school, the only language I spoke and understood was Lahu; as I am from the Lahu tribe. As a result of my inability to speak and understand Thai, I was often hit by my teachers in school. I knew that in order to communicate with my peers and teachers, I had to put in a lot of effort until I was able to read and understand the Thai language. I also came to understand that studying was no easy feat, especially for those who have never had the chance to study. At times, things seemed very difficult and challenging, but it is not impossible for those who try and persevere. Even though, I would not consider myself to be exceptionally intelligent, I tried my best every time until I succeeded.
The fact that I can be where I am today is because of the Almighty God who has blessed me abundantly. Today, I am a university graduate and a staff at House of Hope- where I grew up and where I was able to receive my education. I am very blessed to be able to have this opportunity to work and give back to the society through serving the current children at House of Hope and through my service to God. I was able to live out my dream of getting a good education when I entered House of Hope when I was a young child. I am ever so thankful for the learning opportunities, friends and memories that I have gathered from living at House of Hope.
May God bless everyone who has a part in supporting our children here at House of Hope. Each and every one of you are a great encouragement to our children and you make it possible for our children’s dream to come. I know very well, as I am a recipient of God's goodness and love, and of kind-generous people who have supported me along my journey of growing up in House of Hope. God is good all the time, and all the time God is good! Let's always remember to chase after our dreams-no dream is ever to big to be fulfilled.
Sombat graduated with a degree in Community Development from Chiang Mai Rajabphat University in 2015. He is deeply involved in empowering his local community and helps out with the works at YCF.