Sumalee Boxing Gym and Sumalee Yoga was one such example, initiating a food distribution campaign during the lockdown which helped ensure local communities were receiving support when most needed.
They have sustained their approach of supporting the local community via a new project which is helping underprivileged children by providing free weekly classes at their venue in addition to donations of toys, clothes and books.
The classes, which run every Saturday afternoon and alternate between Muay Thai, Yoga and Meditation, are taught in English primarily to children of Burmese migrant workers based in Phuket although there are several local Thai children enrolled too.
The children practice self defense taught by the Muay Thai team and engage in various Muay Thai based games.
Ruth Baker, a volunteer teacher who specialises in children’s yoga and children who have experienced trauma, teaches breathing techniques, meditation, traditional yoga and associated games.
“It has been really been heartwarming to see the commitment from the children and the fact that the same faces have returned each week,” said Rhian Miller of Sumalee Boxing Gym and Yoga.
“We are now into our sixth week and the progression in their practice and command of English is really starting to show – as a result of this their confidence is clearly growing too,” she added.
Healthy snacks and water are distributed too post-class courtesy of the Revitalize Phuket vegan cafe.
“Additionally we like to give the children something to take home with them after the class,” added Rhian.
“Typically this will be toys, books, clothes which we consider a form of incentive to ensure they maintain their attendance and involvement and thus progression, although they seem to be engaging and enjoying the classes irrespective of the gifts.
“We managed to gather quite a few toy, book and clothes donations from friends when we first started although, naturally, there’s only so much stuff people have lying about so we welcome donations from elsewhere.”
It is hoped that the various skills learnt from the classes can help the children continue to develop in future and the plan is to run the program long-term.
“So far the program has been a great success and it is something we hope will continue” continued Rhian.
“Currently we have room to accommodate about ten more children into the classes,” she concluded.
For further information and for anyone wishing to help with donations please contact Rhian on +66880173018 / email@example.com