Visit by The Young Ambassadors of Virtue, Thailand
28th January, 2019
The Thai delegation arrived at approximately nine on Monday the 28th of January. It was a group consisting of students and teachers from provinces all over Thailand as well as officials from the embassy of Thailand. The Foundation is currently under the royal patronage of Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand. The project was established in 1999 to commemorate the 72nd Birthday of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej (5th December 1999). The delegation was greeted by a welcome party consisting of students from Class 6 & 9 and Vasant Valley teachers.
The events of the day started with a walking tour of the school. The Thai visitors split into three groups accompanied by the students of class 9. They were taken on a comprehensive tour through the entire campus including Junior and Senior school which lasted about thirty minutes. The group reconvened at the Biology lab for their first activity, a Tie and Dye session conducted by teachers of Vasant Valley in which the delegation and students of class 6 created varied patterns from cloth and dyed them with bright colours. The session gave the visitors a glimpse into India's rich Bandhni heritage.
Following, the Tie and Dye session, the delegation and the students retired to the conference room for refreshments. The conference room was enveloped in conversation, it was typical Indian fare consisting of Samosas and Gulab Jamuns.
The delegation then made its way to the Vasant Manch where the noise of Vasant valley faded away, and serenity took precedence. The Vasant Manch had been transformed into a veritable sanctuary to introduce our guests to Yoga. There was soothing music, candles, lamps and flower rangoli's to complete the ambience. The Surya Namaskar and other Yoga postures were all demonstrated with poise and precision.
This serenity soon dissipated as the class 6 students presented a vibrant display of Indian culture. Dressed in colourful costumes the students took the visitors through a presentation on the various states of India culminating in an energetic Bhangra performance. It was a treat to see the Thai students joining in enthusiastically, quickly following the steps of the dance, with colourful Dupatta's swathed around their waists. The energy in the room was mesmerizing. This was soon returned by the Thai students, and the Vasant Manch reverberated with the vibe of Thai culture and our taste buds were sweetened with Thai delicacies that they had brought along to share. The Thai students sang some melodious songs and took our hearts away by singing AASHAYAEN and a counting song in Hindi in perfect harmony and melody.
The Thai students educated us about the concept of 'Sufficiency Economy. Post the economic crisis in Thailand, their king Rama the 9th devised sufficiency economy as an economic policy for their way head. They shifted from an export-based economy to a self-sufficient economy. Sufficiency at home, in the community and at the national level are the three stages of this process. Mindful spending and being smart and moderate in the way you spend is what we learnt from their presentation.
The day concluded with an Indian flavour filled meal which was cherished by both Thai and Indian students.
Siddhant Nagrath, Daksayani Chandra and Jai Mittal