21 Yrs Today

Dear friends,

Today marks 21 years since our family arrived in Thailand to live. We had visited numbers of times before that but on this day 21 years ago, our family made Thailand our home. We had purchased one-way air tickets…  We are so grateful for the lessons learned and opportunities presented in our adopted country.

Our celebration today has been heightened with the fantastic news that Foon has received a full tuition scholarship to study social work at Huntington University in Indiana, USA. He has worked hard to reach this goal and we are happy for him. He plans to begin studying there in August. 

With milestones like today we cannot but help think about ….

Foon for example, who as a toddler came to us, rescued from begging on the streets of Mae Sai, Thailand’s border city with Burma and how different his life could have been. We are so grateful to God for His intervention. In the photo above you can see Foon with some children during his senior project last month… 

Another milestone… Mae (18) and Hope (19) who both now are completing their high school through the Thai part-time education system, while working in local cafes finding their way toward independence. These two girls along with Bam (18) who also has full-time work now, are planning on ‘spreading their wings’ soon toward independence and moving out of home to live nearby. They are moving to a place only 5 minutes away from home. We are so glad they feel confident to take these steps toward independence. In the photo above Bam, Nui and Hope are celebrating Nui’s 18th birthday this past week. (2 March)

It was a joy to be able to help Sriply, a lady who we have know for all the 21 years that we have lived in Thailand, to rebuild and renovate part of her small modest home in the mountains this past week. Thanks to those who give to help us do our projects in the community like this. We are more than grateful for your partnership. In the photo above you can see our team of Thai staff, with Yanee and us at Sriply‘s home in the mountains. 

Paul and Penny Wilcox

Let’s see them through

Happy New Year from our home to yours… January is birth month for two of our Thai kids. We celebrate Bam, who turned 18 on 9th, as well as Yanee’s 15th birthday, coming up on 22nd. This month we will feature these two precious young ladies. Thanks for standing with us to see these kids through.

Several years ago, Yanee graduated Elementary/Primary school and, due to her disability, it was decided that her best educational options would be to homeschool, so this is what she has done since. Yanee has learned many new skills and we are so very proud of her accomplishments. She is very good at puzzles and other games. She has mastered lots of valuable social skills including grocery and market shopping, managing money by receiving correct change, she enjoys and is good at simple maths. Plus, now Yanee can cook numerous delicious meals by herself but usually she achieves this goal with the help of Supun as they cook the family’s evening meal each weekday. Yanee is a very good cook. The highlight of her week is when she is able to visit sick people in hospital which she enjoys doing with Mum/Penny. She is not fearful of strangers and is very friendly and outgoing in her care of others. We are grateful for Yanee. Yanee has taken on management of our 10 laying hens this past year and cares for them daily, feeding the chickens and collecting eggs, etc.

Bam graduated high school last year and is working in a cafe, as well as looking for more work during her “gap year”. Her goal is to submit a scholarship application to a  Singapore University after March 15th, where she hopes to do general studies for two years, with her final goal being a media/web design degree. She already is passionate and gifted in this area after some short courses, combined with a natural gifting, so we are cheering her on as she makes strides toward this goal to hopefully begin her studies in August this year.

Thanks for supporting our family as we encourage these kiddos through their final months and years toward independence.

ALSO… It is becoming more difficult for international workers/volunteers to obtain visas for Thailand and so we ask that you pray for us in this, if you are interested in helping with our visa situation to enable us to stay in the country, please write back and we can give you more details.

Thanks for praying for our Thai family! Most are young adults, and almost all of them are looking toward the goal of their future independence. 

Thanks for your partnership.

Paul and Penny

Let’s see them through

Dear Friends,

Thanks to those who have written and encouraged us since our last letter where we featured Nui and her current internship, as a veterinarian assistant. You will remember that Nui is in the process of reaching this goal as she continues to work long hours. We are more than proud of her as she perseveres at the task. 

This newsletter we want to feature Foon, who is 18 years old and is doing his final year of high school. Exciting news for Foon is that in the last month he received a letter of acceptance to a university in USA. He wants to study social work. We are so proud of Foon, he is making great life choices and is doing very well with his studies. As you most probably know, Foon came to live with us when he was just two years old, and it has been our absolute joy to help steer this young man and now see him confident and ready to venture out into his adult life. 

Please could you pray that Foon will to be approved to receive the tuition and room & board scholarships needed for him to study in USA. We applied for these scholarships together, and will find out by February, 2020 if our applications were successful. Obviously he will need support in this adventure and we will continue to walk the journey with him. If you want to specifically help Foon reach his goals, please reply to this email and let us know.

In past years we have produced a wall calendar, however this year as a change we have a 4×6 fridge magnet with our family photo on it as a gift… see photos above. If you would use a fridge magnet, please send your postal address, with your preference of photo 1 or photo 2 and we will post to you. 

Many blessings for the upcoming Christmas Season…
Penny and Paul Wilcox