SoCal man donates handmade desks to help distance-learning students amid COVID-19

CHINO, Calif. -- A Southern California man's talent for carpentry and heart for giving is transforming the lives of students who lacked an essential tool for remote learning.

"Now there is a big need for desks, so I am building desks," said Chai Hansanuwat of Chino, who had been laid off his job with a software company and was trying to earn extra income by building shelves.

What struck him as he was shearing planks on the table saw in his backyard was that families had an unfilled need during the pandemic. While they depended on high-tech devices, children also needed something else.

"Give them a space that is their own space for school, and it is consistency. I know a lot of parents are working from home right now, and they're in the same room with the kids trying to do school work," Hansanuwat said.

The desk-making effort is not for a profit, though. The Chino hobbyist decided to spread the word on his Instagram page @cr.crafted using #donationdesks and offering a free desk to anyone in the area who needed one.

The response was unexpected.

Besides grateful parents, some people donated supplies so that Hansanuwat could make more desks.

"We love everything he does. Extremely detailed, really sturdy. Built for children, that's for sure. It is not like some at the stores that's made out of cardboard," said parent Ruben Rodriguez.

Hansanuwat is inviting others who are handy with wood to join the campaign. He says he will be sharing his how-to instructions with anyone who messages him.

"So I am really hoping that this word gets out and that other people with tools and the means to do it say, 'Hey, you know what, I can do that, too.' Let's get some desks for kids,'" Hansanuwat said.
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