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Thank you Team!

This is the beginning of December. We’ve just had a month of thanking our supporters, sponsors, friends and families for the commitment they have made over the past months and years supporting the volunteers and projects at Global Alms Incorporated.

The past year has been a huge one for the Global Alms Incorporated team based in Mae Sot and we, the Board, are so amazed at what they have achieved in following their passion to help the disadvantaged and vulnerable people on the Thai-Myanmar border. We sincerely acknowledge the effort each member of the team has put in, the compassion, love and loyalty they have shown, the practical help they have given, and the sacrifices they have made for the communities they work with.

There are a lot of things the team have done which have never been put on Facebook or sent in their newsletters or emails to you. This is to protect the confidentiality of the women and children they work with and also for the safety of the team. Some of the cases will go to court, some will be removing women and children from situations of domestic violence, and others will be giving practical and emotional support to the women and children involved.

This year the team has exceeded all expectations in the work that they have done. I have been impressed by the leadership shown by Mechelle. This year the Global Alms team has had two volunteers from Australia who are sponsored and two migrants who have been funded by grants from Entrust, an Australian organisation. www.entrust.org.au Let me tell you about the team.

Mechelle Moore, Ruth Lesmana, Mol Mol and Lun Ngai, hold international qualifications in NCART (National Training of Children at Risk). www.nationaltrainingforchildrenatrisk.com

Mechelle Moore and Ruth Lesmana are also qualified instructors in pure reality based self-defence with Karl Thornton’s MDTA (Modern Defence Tactics Australia) and hold international qualifications with WCA (World Combat Association). www.mdta.com.au

Mechelle Moore, CEO for Global Alms in Asia has done a great job in leading the team in Mae Sot and in encouraging all the members. Mechelle has now been working in Thailand for four and a half years. In particular she has developed a program called ‘Yes She Matters’ which works with women and girls who have been trafficked, assaulted, raped and/or sexually abused. This program has been very successful in helping these women and girls return to a stable life. If you would like to know more about this program, please go to www.globalalms.com or www.yesshematters.org.

Mechelle has been instrumental in building a good working relationship between Global Alms and the Royal Thai Police, Thai Immigration, the Ministry of Social Development & Human Security and the Mae Sot General Hospital. As well, she has been instrumental in leading the Protection Programs which teaches reality based self-defence (Karl Thornton MDTA) to men, women and young girls e.g. 400 girls at an Islamic School in Mae Sot.

Next I would like to introduce you to our longest serving volunteer, Ruth Lesmana, Director of Training. Ruth was the first person for Global Alms to set foot in Thailand and Myanmar and has been working in the border area for six and a half years. She looks after the overall training of everyone who joins the team in Mae Sot, including those who spend time as interns.

Ruth has been involved in writing many of the programs used by the team. In particular, she oversees all the Global Alms NCART courses which can range from four hours to ten days. These are run in local orphanages, children’s homes and schools, training the caregivers and teachers and cover a number of areas in child development and protection such as working with children at risk of being trafficked and working with children who have come from situations of trauma such as a war zone or family violence.

Ruth is also involved with running vocational programs such as teaching sewing. She has written the training modules for many of the courses and also trained other workers to run these courses. Ruth has stood side by side with Mechelle helping to cover and train locals in a lot of the courses such as self-defence, NCART and Life skills. She is also involved in Yes She Matters cases that require liaising with the police, the hospital or other government departments.

Mol Mol has been with Global Alms for the past year and during this time, she has obtained her international trainer’s qualifications with NCART as well as her Thai government qualifications as an interpreter with Karen and Burmese people. An example of this is when there was a bus accident where 40 people died, the Royal Thai Police asked her to come and talk with the victims’ families in their own language about what had happened to assist them during the Police interviews. She has also been asked by the Royal Thai Immigration Dept to talk to people without documents and who are being returned to Myanmar, in how to avoid being trafficked. Along with Mechelle or Ruth, Mol Mol also attends Yes She Matters cases that require liaising with the police, the hospital or other government departments.

Lun Ngai has been with Global Alms for the past year and during this time, she has translated the whole NCART curriculum into Burmese so it can be taught to locals in their own language. She has also obtained her international trainer’s qualifications with NCART and has been teaching the course in Burmese and English to caregivers. One of Lun’s strongest points is her ability to connect with women and children who have experienced trauma. Young girls who have been abused or raped seem to gravitate towards Lun. They relate to her as friend or big sister and open up to her because they trust her and feel safe with her e.g. one night a woman and her two children knocked on Lun’s front door asking for help. The husband had become violent and was going to harm his wife and children. Lun immediately took the woman and her children to a place of safety.

The Global Alms team in Mae Sot is very special. They have credibility, loyalty, trust and respect with the local community. So, on behalf of the Board, I would like to acknowledge the wonderful work the team are doing and the great difference they have been making in the lives of the disadvantaged and poor in their community. I hope you, their friends, families, supporters and perhaps those who don’t know the whole team, will contact Mechelle and Ruth to let them know they are not alone, and, if you want to, ask them how you can help them.

I could tell you a lot more about the team, but I’m not writing a book. Please feel free to go the Global Alms webpage or contact admin@globalalms.com if you would like any more information. I would like again to thank all those people who have sponsored members of the team.

Thank you to each member of the team on behalf of all those who you help.

Garry Bradford,

President, Global Alms Incorporated

(on behalf of Global Alms Incorporated Board)

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