ABOUT US

Right to Learn Foundation is a non-profit improving the education and lives of children living in poverty.

Breaking The Poverty Cycle One Child at a Time

Starting as a nonprofit school (Koh Tao International Primary) in 2015, Right to Learn Foundation became the first registered charity in the South of Thailand in April of 2021. This ground breaking achievement means the organisation can now use it’s educational advisors, local leaders and years of  experience to improve the lives of children and families in need.

 

480,000

People are listed as stateless in Thailand.

200,000

United Nations estimated number of migrant children without access to education in Thailand.

91,795

As of April 2021, Myanmar refugees that reside in 9 temporary shelters in Thailand.

You have our word—and more

100% of our time, love, blood, sweat and tears goes into this charity

Leading the team

Making big changes takes a strong and dedicated team of passionate advisors and leaders. 

OUR FOUNDER

Claire Wyndham

Claire grew up in Sydney, Australia, until age 8, when she moved to Melbourne, where she spent the rest of her childhood until starting her travels in 2002. Claire completed an Advanced Diploma in Legal Practice and Business Management after high school, and went on her first trip overseas at age 19 to India and Sri Lanka in 1999 with her family. Over the following years, Claire travelled through most of SouthEast Asia, hitchhiking, busing, training and boating her way around Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and then back to the South of Thailand. There she fell in love with a small island called Koh Tao in 2005. Life eventually led to marriage in 2007, and her first child was born in Australia in 2008.

From 2006 to 2014, Claire worked and managed her family’s nightclub, “Robarta” in the infamous suburb of St Kilda, Melbourne. Creating and managing drag shows and live music events became her passion…

Ratchadapron Pinsuwan

Daughter of a school principal and teacher, Ratchadapron is a successful pharmacist and businesswoman in Thailand. Originally from Udon Thani Province, Khun Preaw is a well established Surat Thani resident and mother of two with a strong connection to her community and temple.

Elizabeth Schork

Headteacher and education trainer, Elizabeth holds a Masters Degree in Education. With her extensive experience teaching in Thailand and South Korea, Elizabeth is an accomplished ESL specialist and international curriculum advisor in impoverished communities.

Ploypachara Komviriyawut

Bangkok raised, Ployz attended the Dusit Thani College in Hotel Management and achieved a Bachelor of Business Administration Programs. Then, with a mind for business, Ployz moved onto become a successful business woman, mother of three and dedicated conservationist on the island of Koh Tao.

Milin Chaikhunrut

12 year old Milin was a Thai sponsored student of the current RTL school project- Koh Tao International Primary. Milin is a shining example of what a quality education can do for a child in Thailand. Milin is a passionate marine conservationist, she loves to dive and is a budding entrepreneur having just started her own brand of mask straps Milin.Co.

James Saunders-Wyndham Profile Picture

James Saunders-Wyndham

James is Australian born and has lived in Japan for 15 years. He holds a Masters in Applied Linguistics and is currently finishing a Masters in Research at Macquarie University, Australia. His research interests include- ICT (Communication Technology) in education. James has been a teacher for over 10 years in Asia.

Charity Ambassador- Mikko Paasi

The only way to introduce our ambassador is to let him tell his story. The video above perhaps only gives you a small idea of how huge a heart this man really has. 

Mikko is a talented technical diver, experienced in exploring underwater wrecks in all conditions, mixing gasses and working with complex equipment. He is the owner of Koh Tao Divers, an iconic dive company in the south of Thailand. 

In 2018, Paasi felt a strong calling to help 12 children trapped in a Thai cave during monsoon conditions. The children were exploring the caves when it became flooded. Hundreds of people fled to Chiang Rai, to try and aid in the rescue, not knowing if the children would survive or how to get them out. 

Mikko was one of 4 divers that had the skill set and experience to physically navigate the caves and come up with the ultimate plan that would eventually save all 12 lives. 

There was one catch. Mikko had never actually dived in a cave before. It was purely his experience diving similar environments that would qualify him as the children’s best chance.

AWARDS AND ACCOLADES

August 2018: Received the 1st class Knight Grand Cross of the most admirable order of the Direkgunabhorn from the King of Thailand at the Government House of Bangkok for his efforts in the Thai cave rescue. 
November 2018: Received an accolade from Finnish Association of Fire Officers  given by Kai Mykkänen, the Minister of the Interior in Finland, for his efforts in the Thai cave rescue. 
1.-2.12.2018: Mikko was invited to give a presentation about his experiences at the Tham Luang cave rescue operation at the 10th anniversary of the EUROTEK Advanced Diving Conference in Birmingham, UK.  ​
April 2019: ADEX (Asian Dive Expo) award for “Inspirational excellence”
21.5.2019: Lifesaving medal from the President of Finland granted from Mikko´s efforts in the Thai cave rescue.
Ambassador
Mikko Paasi
Family Man
Mikko Paasi
Thai Cave Rescue Diver
Mikko Paasi
Hero
1st class Knight Grand Cross of the most admirable order of the Direkgunabhorn from the King of Thailand
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In 2011, Claire opened acting school “The Actors Nest” with friend and actor Paul O’Brien on the club’s top floor during daylight hours. Children and adults came from all over Melbourne trained by working professional actors, producers and directors.

In 2014, Claire and her Finnish born husband, Alexander Lundberg,  made the life-changing decision to move their small family to the island of Koh Tao. The couple spent their time focusing on having another baby and enjoying living on a tropical island running a small restaurant. That same year, the couple purchased an international school curriculum and opened Koh Tao International Primary on the balcony of a friend’s house, a not for profit school. Their daughter was born in 2015.

The school grew from 8 children to 70+ students within just a few years. The majority of students were impoverished Myanmar migrant children that would otherwise have little to no education. Student sponsorship programmes, fundraisers and a successful social media presence allowed the school to continue running and growing.

Claire spent years trying to raise funds and support to purchase land and build a permanent school building. However, she never managed to raise enough funds. In 2018, she began applying for an official Thai Foundation Status (charity status). The foundation would be the first official Thai charity in the South of Thailand. This process took two years and the determination of some exceptional and generous lawyers- Work Management Law.

When COVID-19 began, funds to the school dropped, and by April 2021, the school had to be closed until further funding for a permanent solution could be found. In the same month, the Government of Surat Thani granted charity status on the application and the “Right to Learn Foundation” was born.

Claire continues to work towards raising funds to build the Koh Tao International Primary and work towards improving education in Thailand.