During your trip in Laos, you will realize that many villages have a lack of resources, clothing and school supplies. In case you want to make donations to locals, here are our advice :
In case you want to make donations during your trip in Laos, here is a list of necessary materials :
- clothes (especially warm ones, because winters can be rude in the mountains)
- toothbrush, toothpaste, ...
- children's books with images
- school supplies (pencils, notebooks ...)
- carpets for the class (easy to find in Laos)
- football or volleyball inflatable balls (with a pump)
- skipping ropes ...
You can buy this equipment directly in Luang Prabang, Vientiane or Pakse, so as you don't have to carry it in your luggage.
The ritual of Donation
There is a whole process to make a donation and your guide will be your best advisor. Firstly, it is necessary to avoid giving presents directly to villagers and children because it risks to create jealousies and to develop begging. Also, please avoid giving candy! The kids will be very happy on the moment but there is no dentist to treat future cavities.
Your guide knows very well the villages you will visit. He will know exactly where your donation will be the most useful. He will contact the village authorities, who are the head of the village, the director of the school and some elders.
During an official "ceremony", which often takes place at schools, you will donate to the village community.