The northern region of Thailand has borne the brunt of the Thai AIDS epidemic. Three of the four most affected provinces (with HIV prevalence in antenatal clinics higher than 4%) are located in the Upper North: Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, and Phayao. Children face problems as a result of HIV/AIDS that begin long before their parents die. Financial strain caused by ailing relatives often forces these children - especially girls, for whom education is deemphasised - to drop out of school to replace lost adult labour. In response to this problem, Save the Children/US developed the Thailand Child-Friendly Schools Program (CFSP) in 1998 to help schools respond to the special physical needs of children in distress, facilitate the development of psychosocial competencies, and promote healthy lifestyles and resilience in school children disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS.

Published in 2001, this report is a compilation of the activities that were implemented as part of this programme, and the results of the effort, in three provinces of northern Thailand. The report outlines the methodology utilised and highlights the best practices and lessons learned during the planning and implementation of the project. For instance, it describes each activity, outlines its objectives, discusses the training process, and presents the results. The report illustrates the importance of incorporating communities into the planning and implementation process of any development project. It is intended as a resource tool for organisations planning to replicate this or similiar projects in the future.

The table of contents includes:
  • Preface
  • Background & Overview
  • Implemented Activities
    • Activities 1: School self - assessment process
    • Activities 2: Active learning, learning styles, multiple intelligence
    • Activities 3: Self-esteem and dealing with death for teachers and administrators
    • Activities 4: Self-esteem and dealing with death for parents and community leaders
    • Activities 5: Psychological testing
    • Activtiies 6: Participatory planning with schools
    • Activities 7: Rainbow camp
    • Activities 8: Counseling training
    • Activities 9: Student-initiated activities in school
    • Activities 10: Participatory evaluation activities and learning exchange seminar
    • Activities 11: Seminar to disseminate results of the project to key stakeholders for replication
  • Best Practices
  • Lessons Learned