A collaborative CAS project whereby students get together to learn about and make healthy food
A great reflection and video from Aminta on her expereince with the Dek Muk Ngai organization
I lead a small music group in Dek Muk Ngai. But what is Dek Muk Ngai, you may ask. Dek Muk Ngai is a local, small non-profit organization situated in the Nonthaburi province, just on the edge of Bangkok. Founded by a Monk, the organization itself offers free sunday classes at a community’s temple for local less fortunate children from poor families; some living in a divorced family, some living in unemployed households, and some neglected by parents. With the local community being full of threats due to the majority living on the brink of poverty, these children have a high chance to being exposed to many perils including drugs and substance use, alcohol, prostitution, and many more. Dek Muk Ngai aims to provide warmth, comfort, help the children to find their hobbies and passions, and become a beautiful distraction from the harsh reality that they are living in. Because of my love for music, I decided, along with a group of my friends who agreed to join after my persuasion, to introduce the art of playing instruments – the guitar and ukulele – to children with hope of them discovering what they love. I cannot begin to explain enough how significant my leadership has been in completely changing lives.
One noteworthy life that I have influenced is a 12-year-old girl named Ham. The relationship between myself and Ham began on the very first day that I visited the temple. Before her, I never really interacted with a younger person than myself, as I am the youngest in my family, let alone someone who has been abandoned by their father and mother. Ham was a fast learner; as I showed her the basic chords of C, G, Am, and F and a simple strumming pattern on the ukulele, and she seemed to be able to strum and alternate between the chords with an hour into the lesson. Throughout our lesson, her eyes twinkled and she beamed like a child unwrapping a present on Christmas morning. Come a few Sundays later, she was able to accompany her own singing in songs that were rather advanced and saved up money to buy her own ukulele. I never thought a girl could be so immensely happy about a small, four-stringed instrument. “Don’t your fingers hurt?” I asked after noticing her not complaining about the red marks on her fingers. As I pointed out, Ham grinned, and she responded “Yes, but I am still going to play.” Eventually, I realised that Ham had found her place. She had found her beautiful distraction, and I knew that it was the greatest gift that any girl in her place could ask for.
From the Dek Muk Ngai experience, my goals, my hopes, and my dreams for the future became more apparent. I want to be able to continue to make a difference in people’s lives by doing what I enjoy most and to be able to share it with the whole community. Considering that I am passionate about learning about the anatomy of the human body, and how I am vastly interested in the study of Biology and Chemistry, I continuingly asked myself “What is a profession that connects to what I love and at the same time, helps other people?”. Dek Muk Ngai introduced me to leadership, and leadership introduced me to Ham, who taught me a lesson, and changed my perspective.
This video by Samantha and Spun is a good example of a CAS experience that combines creativity and service in a way that is meaningful to both the NIST students who participate and the younger children they work with.
A video of images of the June Senior Prom that was organized by students as part of their CAS project. Thanks to Amy and Amrita for making and submitting the video.
A good creative video made to demonstrate Natasha and Nikki’s cooking experience for CAS.
The Concordia Welfare Centre service group is an ongoing school-based activity that assists underprivileged children by entertaining them through creative activities. This service group operates on every Wednesday after school from 14:30 to 17:30. We strive to remain committed and engaged throughout our visits and are always open for new members to join. From this CAS experience we have developed several important skills such as collaboration and communication, planning, and organisation. This video highlights all the hard work we have been doing for the past few months:
A video made by Luca Bertacca in Y12 to promote the work the OMG (Ocean marine guardians) service group is doing:
Being part of the Ocean Marine Guardians means you will be able to know about these full day boat trips that are soon going to be happening around once a month. On these trips we have a lot of fun hanging around in the sun and the water while setting up coral reef nurseries. We focus on the Koh Rin and we will be doing other projects that help maintain this island. https://www.facebook.com/Kohrinproject/?pnref=story
A video and reflection on touch rugby by Eliza Ward: This 2015-2016 academic year would make it my second time in the Varsity Touch Rugby team, however, several things have changed between the off season. First of, we have lost 5 of our key players as they have graduated and had to leave the school, this greatly affected the skill level of our team as they were the most experienced players. The majority of the team this year have never played the game, therefore, the past players and I try to share our knowledge through each training as well as offer them some tips and skills which they can use in game situations. I must communicate and participate in the group as an expert although I have only played for one season because there are those who haven’t played at all, meaning I am always ready to assist others when they need help. Since most of the girls don’t fully understand the game yet, I must be flexible around the pitch and try to take on roles that force new skills onto the girls. Recently, I have been trying to work with each player I am partnered with in order to identify their weaknesses and teach them how its properly done. I also collaborate with some of the other team mates in order to demonstrate to the new players how a drill is done.
A video made by Hiroko Hongyok in Y13:
Ocean Marine Guardians (OMG) is a service group that aims to make sustainable conservation efforts toward preserving the ocean and marine ecosystems in Thailand. The group organizes various events throughout the year, including the Clean Up the Reef Day, mangrove planting, and artificial coral reef building. We have a meeting once a cycle on Day G during lunch. I joined OMG because I always had an interest in marine ecosystems, especially mangroves -which is what my personal project was based on. By joining OMG, I have the opportunity to be involved in something that I am passionate about as well as make a difference at the same time. I feel like I can contribute to this service group, as I have a lot of knowledge about the issue, especially mangroves.
An excellent video of a TED talk that relates to many aspects of CAS. Through CAS students develop many attributes that help create the kind of citizens Hugh talks of the world needing more of.