Pattaya Redemptorist Technological College for People with Disabilities
Since it’s opening in 1984 more than three thousand young adults living with a disability have graduated from the Redemptorist Vocational School for People with Disabilities. In 2018 the Royal Thai Ministry of Education granted permission for the Vocational School to be upgraded to college status, hence the name change.
New students arrive from across the country, and they will all study the same compulsory subjects, but they will have the option to major in Computer Business, Computer Programming, or Electronic Repair. There is also an Elementary Education course for those who have had little or no formal education.
Each course last three years and the school provides education, accommodations, meals and health care free of charge. In return, the school expects the students to study hard, pass their examinations and join the workforce as worthwhile members of society.
The school also encourages the students to take up a sport, and students have gone on to participate in local, national and international sporting events, such as the Asian Games, the South East Asian Games and also the Paralympic Games; in the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games two former students won gold medals, to go with the gold medals they won four years previous at the London 2012 Games.
Not only is the school free, but it also guarantees that all graduating students will have employment when they leave and they will be able to, and in the words of the school’s founder, Father Ray Brennan, ‘earn their own rice’.
There is a sister school in the northern city of Nong Khai which offers similar courses to young adults living with a disability.