History and Activities

When Education for Development Fund (EDF) founder Terumasa Akio travelled the world in the 1980s, he was moved by the lengths Thai students went for an education, often in the face of hardship. While many families knew education was critical for their children’s future, they couldn’t afford to pay basic fees or lose someone who could help at home and in the fields. This inspired EDF’s initial fundraising efforts for Thailand, which sent 41 underprivileged students from Udon Thani to school, changing their lives forever.

Today, EDF Thailand matches donors with individual students, creating a powerful bond that propels students to success. We’ve provided over 380,000 scholarships to students in 5,500 schools across 61 provinces across Thailand.

A few students from the first group of EDF scholars, 1988

Besides our many scholarships and educational access programs, we also partner with local government offices and businesses to raise awareness about public health issues, promote technical education in areas like agriculture in schools, and take part in disaster relief efforts.

EDF Thailand is also recognized for its record of results. We were declared NGO of the Year at the Thailand NGO Awards 2012 and earned 5-star ratings in Good Governance and Transparency as well as Financial Efficiency from the Giving Back Association in 2016.

Scholarship Programs

EDF Thailand has a total of 4 scholarship programs: lower secondary, upper secondary, students with disabilities, and orphaned students from South Thailand. 100% of every donation will go directly to funding a single student through school.

Lower Secondary Scholarships

Your donation of US$65 a year helps a student attend lower secondary school for a year. This is the stage where Thai students most often encounter roadblocks to continuing their education. A scholarship changes the life of a student by:

All lower secondary scholarship students:

Lower Secondary Scholarship hand over Ceremony in Songkhla Province in 2017

Support a lower secondary school student today

Upper Secondary/Vocational Scholarships

Upper secondary scholars in 2017

Your donation of US$160 helps an especially promising student attend upper secondary or vocational school, which will:

In addition to meeting the qualifications for lower secondary school scholarships, all upper secondary scholarship students must also have completed 9th grade with a grade point average of at least 2.75.

Support an upper secondary or vocational student today

Students with Disabilities Scholarships

Disabled students often face additional challenges in receiving an education. EDF Thailand’s scholarships enhance disabled students’ physical, social, and emotional development as well as their self-sufficiency.

Your donation of US$160 will support a disabled student by:

All scholarship students have demonstrated communication and learning skills and come from impoverished households.

Support a disabled student today

Under the Same Sky Scholarships for Orphans of Violence

2015 Under the Same Sky scholarship hand over ceremony held in Pattani province

The three southernmost provinces of Thailand (Yala, Pattani, and Narathiwat) have been the site of sustained violence since 2004. Schools have been destroyed and killings have orphaned thousands of children.

EDF’s Under the Same Sky Scholarships help children orphaned by this violence continue their education in the face of extreme adversity.

Your donation of US$160 will help a student from Yala, Pattani, or Narathiwat province whose family has lost their primary wage earner due to violence. Your support will help them receive an education and break the cycle of poverty and violence.

Support an Under the Same Sky student today

EDF Thailand’s Nationwide Programs

Thanks to EDF Thailand’s success in providing scholarships for individual students, we’ve expanded our work to address broad issues that impact access to education throughout the country through several programs. Our nationwide projects touch the lives of tens of thousands of children by:

Donate to EDF Thailand’s programs today

Volunteer or Visit Thailand through EDF

Want to go above and beyond—literally? EDF has given volunteers the opportunity to work on projects in the field since 2008. Through these projects, volunteers have improved the lives of over 1,500 students.

We also offer trips that let you see the impact of EDF Thailand’s work in person. Past trips have included staying with families in the community, meeting scholarship students, and making local crafts.

Drop us a message to find out about opportunities to visit or volunteer Thailand through EDF