About us

Schools of Hope was established in 2008 by Venerable Phramaha Virote, the abbot of Wat Arunotai (Nong Ook, Chiang Mai province), together with Noom Hkurh and Dr. Inger LIse.


Venerable Pramaha Virote

Venerable Pramaha Virote is a monk whose goal is to help orphans and disadvantages children living along the Thai/Burmese border. He has used his own support to provide children in need with a safe place to stay and study.

He has many years experience teaching and providing assistance, such as healthcare and food, to orphans and the poor children of migrant and refugees families. For several years he taught children basic Thai, Shan, Maths and sent them to official schools.

He allowed the school to use the temple property as a safe house and dormitory for boys/girls. Thanks to his generosity, Schools of hope was able to establish its first school.
Today he’s part of the administration team of Schools of Hope and he works hard to nurture all of our children by creating a fun and loving atmosphere.



Noom Hkurh

Noom Hkurh is a Shan teacher with solid experience working in schools for impoverished children and orphans on the Thai/Burmese border. He has received training and education form local organizations and NGOs.

His dream is to help poor children, especially those who have suffered the same difficulties he faced as a child. He started thinking about setting up small schools when he was 14, living in an orphan institute on the Thai/Burmese border.

He tried to find ways to help children have more access to education when he was teaching at Watfawainginn School. By then, he was thinking of looking for a place in Fang and set up a small classroom for poor children living on farms with their parents. Finally he heard about a monk in Nong Ook, Venerable Pramaha Virote, who has the same idea as him.

Noom Hkurh is now working as the principal of the Schools of Hope in Nong Ook , taking care of the children staying at the safe house (10 novices, 34 orphan boys and 13 orphan girls).

Noom Hkurh  & Venerable Pramaha Virote Visutho


Ms. Inger-Lise

Ms. Inger-Lise (Lisa) Bjorkelid is the former director and co-founder of an orphanage, a safe-home offering free education, medical care and a loving home environment to Shan orphans, IDPs and other disadvantaged children.

She is a Norwegian woman who has worked in Thailand helping displaced Shan children since 1999. Lisa was among the promoters of Schools of Hope and collaborated during the first year of activity at the Nong Ook school.