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15 June 2021

Music, hope and faith in Mae Sariang (Read in Thai)

Huai Kong Pae – a small community of Pgaqueno Karen population. With a distance of 55 kilometres that took us more than 2 hours to go through forests and mountains and cross rivers and streams, we finally made it to this small village sitting right by the Thailand-Myanmar border with a population of 60 households or only 320 people. One of the most difficult and remote development areas of World Vision Foundation of Thailand is Mae Sariang Project, Mae Sariang District, Mae Hong Son Province.

Music – something that has been with humanity since the beginning and becomes an inseparable part of our life – in joy, sadness, disappointment and success, as well as the music of faiths and rituals. For Ban Huai Kong Pae, a Karen Christian community, songs and music play an important role in their religious rites. But due to the lack of readiness of this little church, worship songs were only accompanied by handclaps. Without any musical instruments, it felt gloomy and not engaging to adolescents. No wonders, only elders and little kids were sighted in this church.

One of the church leaders shared with us: “Children and youth were reluctant to join the worship service and said that it was dull, quiet and boring. The church leaders were discussing having a set of musical instruments to play worship songs and attract teenagers to play music and worship God together so that our church would no longer be left with just seniors and young children like this.”

Hope - Despite a small community located remotely, modern communication technology enables children and youth in Huai Kong Pae to swiftly access information. Their traditional norms, way of life, attitude and values were challenged. It was a concern of the leaders of the church and the community about the future of their children and youth. World Vision Foundation of Thailand has fulfilled their hope that was once lost through various interventions, such as Child Sponsorship Programme, Parents Livelihoods Promotion Project and many special projects, aiming at creating well-being for vulnerable children and their families and communities to enable their self-sustainability.

Full Photo

Full Photo

Full Photo

Full Photo

On this occasion, World Vision Thailand has collaborated with the leaders of the church and the community to organise the Bible Summer Camp that teaches kids to lead a proper life according to the scripture and gives them an opportunity to spend time together in constructive activities. World Vision Thailand has also supported the church with some musical instruments, a drum set and an electric acoustic guitar, which were much interested by children and youth within the community. And this will be another assurance that the kids of Huai Kong Kae Village will not turn from the way they should go.

Nid, a 14-year-old girl who has participated in the Bible Summer Camp last summer, proudly said: “My friends and I barely went to church or dare to express ourselves. But after joining the Bible Summer Camp, we would like to get involved more with the church’s activities. We love playing music and singing worship songs. Now I can play the guitar. I have an intention to teach younger kids how to play as well.”

Faith – Lastly: “I’d like to thank World Vision Thailand for supporting the camp running and the musical instruments to our church. My friends and I are happy to attend the service every Sunday.” Nid’s smile unveils the joy, hope and faith she has for herself and her religion through music at the Huai Kong Pae village.

Note: The photo of the event was taken before the COVID