Latest update

Poverty in Thailand has drastically decreased over the past four decades. But pockets of poverty still exist—particularly along the borders and in the northeast, where many children lack citizenship and have gravely insufficient access to education and health care. Compassion’s holistic child development programs are designed to be adapted to suit the local context and needs. In Thailand, the current primary areas of focus for our church partners are:

  • Reducing rates of infant and child malnutrition
  • Helping youth access vocational opportunities
  • Supporting local churches to ensure their programs' sustainability

Watch the latest video update below from our neighbours in Thailand to learn more.

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Country update

How you can pray

Thank you for praying for staff, children and families in Thailand.

Please join us in praying for the following:

  • Pray for families affected by hazardous smoke and heat, particularly in the northern part of the country.
  • Pray for health and provision for families and children in Thailand without sufficient food.
  • Pray that God would raise up more teachers for schools and provide students with books and resources they need for their education.
  • Pray for confidence and wisdom for the youth currently undertaking further education.
  • Pray for wisdom and strength for local workers as they support children and their families who are at risk of abuse and domestic violence.
  • Praise God for a local church who has become self-sufficient after a long-term partnership with Compassion.
  • Pray for unity and effective collaboration for the national leadership team as they make decisions for the future.
  • Pray for the children and families experiencing unrest along the border of Myanmar and Thailand, and for our local church partners who are working tirelessly to help them.
The gift of clean water in Thailand

The gift of clean water in Thailand

Jaruwan is 13 years old and lives in a church dormitory connected to her local Compassion centre in Thailand. To collect water, Jaruwan and her friends often need to walk down the hill from their centre multiple times a day. But the water there is not clean.   Read more open_in_new

A snapshot of Compassion's Child Sponsorship Program in Thailand

Compassion’s program is contextualised across countries and communities, as well as age groups.

  • Children aged 1 to 3 receive home-based care.
  • Children aged 3 to 12 visit the Compassion centre for six to eight hours a week on Saturdays or Sundays.
  • Students aged 12 and older attend for four hours on Saturdays or Sundays.

Compassion Program Activities in Thailand

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Compassion assisted children in Thailand typically attend program activities at their local child development centre on Saturdays and Sundays. Here is an example of what a typical program day looks like for children in Thailand.

8:00am - A time of prayer and devotion.

9:00am - Spiritual lessons, when children sing songs and learn Bible stories.

10:30am - Break time, when children can play in a safe environment and develop friendships. A nutritious snack is provided.

11:00am - Social-emotional lessons, covering topics from conflict resolution to developing healthy self-esteem and a godly character. Children often come from challenging home environments and are taught social and personal skills.

12:00pm - Lunch time, usually a meal of rice, vegetables and meat. Milk is provided for young children. Children who are malnourished receive additional food to take home each month, such as rice, eggs, canned fish and milk.

1:00pm - Health lessons, where children learn practical health and hygiene tips. An example topic is how to prevent malaria and HIV/AIDS transmission.

2:00pm - Letter writing and career planning. Older children work with local staff to identify their strengths and interests, and set goals for their future.

Children in Thailand also participate in extracurricular activities such as games and music, community sports days, as well as community service opportunities such as anti-drug campaigns. These activities are generally held during school holidays.

Every year, parents are offered parenting classes and meetings to inform them about what their children are learning at the child development centre. There are also special events such as Family Camp, Mother's Day and Father's Day. Many programs also offer income-generation training for parents.

The greatest needs impacting children living in poverty in Thailand


of children under the age of 5 are experiencing stunted growth


babies in every 1000 die before their first birthday

Thailand is called 'The Land of Smiles' and is known for its tropical beaches, beautiful palaces and historic ancient ruins. Thai people are known for being positive, warm and family-oriented, and they take great pride in their culture. Family is the cornerstone of life, and it is quite common for elderly relatives to live together with younger family members.

The country was an absolute monarchy until 1932, when it became a constitutional monarchy. It’s the only country in Southeast Asia that has never been colonised, but that doesn’t mean it has been free from political struggle. Thailand has a long history of military coups. Former Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha seized power in a military coup in 2014. After three months of uncertainty following an election in May 2023, Srettha Thavisin was appointed as Thailand's newest Prime Minister.

Despite deep political divisions, Thailand has experienced rapid social and economic development over the past four decades, changing from an agricultural-based to an industrial-based economy. However, inequalities in socio-economic welfare still remain, caused by disparities in the distribution of wealth, environmental degradation and the effects of urbanisation and COVID-19. The people groups living in the nation’s northern- and western-most regions are particularly affected, due to a combination of a lack of infrastructure and services and their status as ethnic minorities.

Up to half of these ethnic minority hill tribe members don’t have citizenship papers, meaning they cannot own land or travel freely between districts and have no access to social welfare services. This makes them vulnerable to a range of issues: poor healthcare and education, unemployment and economic poverty, even trafficking and threats of displacement. Yet, without citizenship, they lack representation and face a long road to economic and social equality.

The local church continues to be critically important in caring for the families and children of these forgotten communities.

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06 Aug, 2015

3 Children Share Why They Love Receiving Letters

Supakan’s home has only one piece of furniture: a cupboard made from cardboard and glass. It’s where her family keeps their favourite, most precious belongings—like Supakan’s letters from her sponsor. Why are letters so valuable to sponsored children? We asked three children from around the world to share why their sponsor’s letters mean so much... Read more