The Return of the Forest is the first of an intended series of conservation books for primary school children in Thailand, both Thai and foreigners in international schools. Its messages, however, are universal and could apply to many countries around the world.
As the name implies, this book has to do with conserving forests and its resident wild animals, covering in simplified terms such major threats as deforestation, burning of forests, poaching and extinction of wild animal species, and plastic pollution. The vehicle is an adventure story and mystery which the scouts must solve.
The story takes place in Doi Suthep/Pui National Park, in Chiang Mai, at a waterfall popular for Thais and school classes to have a picnic outing. It focuses on Thai scouts who are going on a hiking trip. The central characters are a Thai boy scout named Yuenyong, and his sister Lamduan.
This is not meant to be a Science studies book, to capture all aspects of the geography and zoology of the forests of northern Thailand. The intention is to engender a love of and respect for Nature and all creatures on Earth, and to realise that as one individual, one has the power to create change and to act to protect the environment. A secondary message is respect for, and learning from, elders in the community.
Copyright Linda Pfotenhauer