Our journey of delivering a brighter future for underprivileged children began in 2015. As co-founders of the Diamond Elephant Foundation, Martin Häberli and Torbjörn Larisch have been funding, fund-raising and leading meaningful projects that offer education, scholarship opportunities and improved living conditions across Thailand. As our family of donors and supporters grows, we had an opportunity to learn more from Torbjörn Larisch; about how it all started and his vision to expand the positive impact of the Foundation.
How did things get started with the Diamond Elephant Foundation?
Over the past decades, Thailand has made great progress in lifting millions of people out of poverty through economic development programs. Unfortunately, there are still those less fortunate and especially children who have not yet fully benefited from this progress. As long-term residents in Thailand, Martin Häberli and I felt the time had come for us to give back to our adopted home country; and the best and most organized way to do it was to cooperate with local Thai authorities in setting up a foundation that supports Thai underprivileged children.
Torbjörn Larisch, at the gift presentation for Ban Khlong Duea School, the smallest and most deprived school in Nakhon Ratchasima province, Thailand.
How are you involved in running the Foundation?
Since 2015, Martin and I remain the main driving forces behind the Foundation, both financially and in terms of leadership. We are hands-on in every project, even participating in the construction ourselves. I myself helped in tiling the floor for a charity in the Pattaya area, as well as conducted regular inspections and advised the girl’s dormitory reconstruction at the Wat Thung Hiang Children Shelter which we regularly support.
Torbjörn Larisch and the Foundation committee at the construction site of the boy dormitory, a project for Wat Thung Hiang Children Shelter. From left to right: Torbjörn Larisch – Co-founder, Yen Nguyen, Phimchanok Chareonying – Secretary and Martin Häberli – Chairman.
You really love Thailand a lot! Seems like you’re really advocating for the country’s future.
Yeah, we do. We strongly believe that in helping people to help themselves, we are creating truly sustainable support for the future. Therefore, we strive to create an environment where children can enjoy education without needing to worry about material necessities so they can reach their highest potential and change their lives.
What are your future plans for expanding the Foundation’s impact?
This year, our biggest project is a further expansion of the facilities at the Wat Thung Hiang Children Shelter, especially renovating the girl’s dormitory. As of right now, we are working with other foundations and organizations in Thailand to reach further support for those in our charge.
Torbjörn Larisch and Martin Häberli, presenting a donation of one million baht from FLS Group to Diamond Elephant Foundation.
Thank you for sharing and your contribution to the Diamond Elephant Foundation. We wish you all the best in this meaningful journey!