2019 seems like Kong Dee’s year. You remember Kong Dee, right? In case you don’t know who Kong Dee is, he is the first beneficiary of our Scholarship Program. Kong Dee has come a long way to get to where he is now. When we met him six years ago, Kong was just a 19-year-old boy attending a local high school. At the time, he was a stateless refugee with big dreams and little means of achieving them. Although he couldn’t speak English, he had a desire to be a teacher even with the odds of achieving that dream heavily stacked against him.
Although Kong did well in his studies, the chance of him continuing his education after high school was next to nil. You see, Kong’s parents were farmers who barely lived hand-to-mouth. They simply couldn’t afford college fees for him. Six years later, and Kong Dee is as close to achieving his dream as he can ever be. After graduation, Kong’s journey Is just beginning.
The first job
Just a few days ago, we received a beautiful message from an excited Kong Dee. He had been offered a teaching job by the school where he was training in his last year of college. By reading his message, you can almost literally feel how ecstatic he is. He can now see his life starting to take shape and the future ahead of him becoming bright. To think that just six years ago, all that he has achieved now seemed like an unreachable goal. Just a young boy’s dream.
In the message, Kong dee expressed his gratitude to the entire Echo International Aid family for helping him achieve his dreams. His parents were equally, if not more, grateful and invited the Echo family to visit anytime we wanted. Kong Dee expressed immense appreciation for the help he got courtesy of our generous donors whom we would also like to thank for being part of his incredible journey.
A vow to give
The most crucial part of Kong Dee’s message was the point where he said that he would be turning into a giver more than a receiver. In addition to getting a quality formal education, Kong Dee learned something important from his experience. That it’s always good to give.
Were it not for the generosity of our donors; Kong Dee would probably have never achieved his life-long dream of becoming a teacher. He wouldn’t have gotten his citizenship, he wouldn’t have gotten quality education, and he most probably wouldn’t have gotten a chance to travel outside the country. Without help from Echo International Aid and its donors, Kong Dee would have probably fallen through the cracks and fallen victims to exploitation through trafficking or slave labour.
Just like Kong Dee, Echo International Aid would love to express it’s gratitude to our donors. Were it not for them, we wouldn’t have achieved this much, and our work would be a lot more complicated than it is now. Though we still have more to do, we are appreciative of the far we’ve come.
There is still more left to do
As the first beneficiary of our Scholarship Program, Kong Dee has already started transforming his community, one student at a time. Imagine the good that ten beneficiaries would do to their community. How about a hundred? When we help educate the young stateless refugees, we set the foundation for the transformation of society as a whole.
At Echo International, our goal is to help the refugees in the Thai/Burma region become a self-reliant community. With the help of our donors and well-wishers, we believe that we can turn around the lives of these unfortunate people that fate dealt a lousy hand. We believe that we can have several other Kong Dees ready to help and share their knowledge with others in their community.