A respected children’s charity in Thailand will be able to continue to bring smiles to disadvantaged boys and girls throughout the country after recruitment company Monroe Consulting Group Thailand provided funding to keep the charity running – both financially and on the road – indefinitely.
John Tolmie, Managing Director of Monroe Thailand, said the cash injection would ensure that the Gift of Happiness Foundation, founded and run by circus entertainer Eddie Haworth, would continue operating until the end of the year. And starting next year, the recruitment company would provide an ongoing monthly donation to allow the foundation to keep doing what it did best – entertaining underprivileged children, John said.
“We had been supporting the Gift of Happiness Foundation for about six months and I was keeping abreast of Eddie’s Facebook and he mentioned that that were really struggling because a couple of sponsors had pulled out and he needed a pick-up truck,” John said. “So we decided to buy him a new one.”
John said the foundation had negotiated with Mitsubishi to purchase the vehicle at cost price and Monroe were happy to provide the 500,000 baht to allow the sale to go ahead. “He was absolutely delighted because he was reaching that point where he was really struggling to support it, he couldn’t afford to do it himself,” John said. “I think it came at the perfect time for him, to be honest. Now they’re up and running, literally.”
He said that Monroe had had to terminate a relationship with a previous charity the recruitment company had worked with because of management concerns, but this was not an issue with the Gift of Happiness Foundation, which was well run and financially transparent.
“We’re now the official corporate sponsors for Gift of Happiness,” he said. “Besides the truck and our regular financial contributions to help keep it ticking over, Monroe’s team of recruitment consultants are excited to get more involved because Eddie’s always needed volunteers to help gather and sort items donated to underprivileged children throughout Thailand, from the slums of Bangkok to refugee camps in the north of the country.”
The foundation and its team of volunteers distributes tons of vital supplies, including medical supplies, food and clothing, to vulnerable children and their families, and regularly provide interactive and educational comedy shows that bring a little light into the bleak existence of many of the children.
Eddie said the financial support was a “gift from heaven.” “We’ve been in desperate need of some corporate sponsorship for many years and Monroe are our first corporate sponsor,” he said. “What Monroe have committed to is great, it is very helpful indeed as we were desperately short of funds and always will be. Our job is that big.”
He said the donation of the Mitsubishi vehicle was “the answer to my dreams.” “We had such a volume of donations of goods coming in that we always had to hire or borrow another vehicle every time we went up to the refugee camps in the north of Thailand and we desperately needed a new truck, Eddie said. “And John has been wonderful helping us.”
Eddie, a professional circus clown, said besides the provision of essential supplies for desperate families, he provided children with interactive, slap-stick clown shows – a form of entertainment that was foreign to the vast majority of boys and girls but was universally understood.
“The kids that see the show and receive the goods often don’t even have access to a TV so they have never seen anything like this. Live entertainment just doesn’t happen in their lives,” he said. “It gives them a happy memory that no one else can steal from them … this is something that they can hold on to for the rest of their lives. And it is very important that they have that small opportunity of a couple of hours of genuine happiness.”