Second Chances with Sati FoundationWritten by Nan T
Sati Foundation unique approach to nonprofit organization model used art to save and improve lives, one project at the time.
What if art can serve a bigger purpose by improving the lives of people from their darkest places? Sati Foundation proves how art can be just the right tool to drive social changes. “Sati is a Buddhist Pali word which refers to a state of mindfulness. As the name implies, we want to make a difference in society by solving problem mindfully; not just blind actions and asking for donations without getting results,” points out Saks Rouypirom, Founder of Sati Foundation.
Born in the United States, Saks graduated from New York University with a pre-med degree in psychology. His experiences in the States impacted him deeply, and he developed a passion for giving back to the community. At a young age, Saks has always been volunteering and dreamt that one day, he would start a nonprofit organisation.
In 2011, he turned his dream into reality after relocating to Bangkok to focus his passion. His mission is to change how the general public view non-profit organisation in Thailand, which typically involves forced sympathy and donations that may not get to those in needs to something that is backed by facts and delivered results.
His one of a kind non-profit model focus on teaching necessary skills such as medical and science to people in needs, including applied art therapy workshop taught by volunteer professional artists where various form of collaborations are used to make a difference in one’s life.
Amongst many of the projects, the Art Therapy program collaborates with Hub Saidek Foundation, a shelter offering support to disadvantaged children in Bangkok “The original idea of our Art Therapy program started when I went to The Hub for the first time to teach about STDs and drug awareness. I learned that the kids weren’t really responding well in a classroom environment, so I changed the method of teaching to prioritise workshops and hand ons projects,” explains Saks.
As of now, Sati collaborates with various creatives in Bangkok from photographers to dancers to create various workshops for inner city kids. Their recent project was a collaborative project with Paron School of Art along with Hub Saidek Foundation to raise awareness about the topic of runaway youth expressed through a mural on a public bus painted by children from The Hub themselves.
The Runaway Bus project encouraged passerby who came across the bus to take a picture and to share on social media to raise awareness about the issue. Sati Foundation is also in collaboration with Case Space Revolution, a creative space that encourage the use of art to drive social change. Amongst the many memorable exhibition held was the photography exhibition SKY: A Faces/Now Exhibition, where selected works from the kids at Hub Saidek Foundation was on display.
“We’re still working on developing programs to improve lives by actually taking actions that matter. Thailand still has a long way to go as far as really understanding the concept of non-profit, as it’s not about just giving money but try to give people something they can use for the rest of their lives, that’s part of our challenge,” said Saks.
Address: 3/22 Sukhumvit 31, Klongtoey-nua, Watttana, Bangkok 10110 Thailand
Telephone: +66 (0) 81-934-6101