A sala for at-risk children in Thailand

The Freedom Story (formerly The SOLD Project)
Chiang Rai, Thailand


The Freedom Story helps prevents child sexual exploitation and trafficking in Thailand. They do this by providing vulnerable Thai children and youth with scholarships and resources to help them break the cycle of poverty, avoid the dangers of child trafficking, and lead productive, independent lives.

The project

A Fund Their Future grant allowed The Freedom Story to build a large covered shelter area (which the Thai call a “sala”) that has a cement floor and is raised off the ground. The sala provides a place for the students to play and learn outdoors during weather-challenging months – the rainy season and months of intense heat –and a place to host events and training seminars for the parents, students and others in the community.

The applicant

Melissa Fredette, Cultural Care staff member in Boston

Melissa’s cousin, Deidre, was a volunteer at The Freedom Story and came back to the U.S. with stories about the impact they were making. Melissa had the opportunity to travel to Chiang Rai and visit The Freedom Story with Cultural Care staff and local childcare consultants to dedicate the new structure and to make stepping stones with the children to allow them to get from their classroom to the sala in the muddy season.