Expanding to Two Needy Villages

North Thailand TCD Expansion

 

In January 2021, an outbreak of COVID-19 in Thailand forced much of the country into lockdown, thus restricting the movement of GHNI team members. However, once the lockdown was lifted, our team was able to visit the village where we have been building relationships, assessing their situation, and conducting training. This trip was very informative in that we learnt that the two village champions are employed part-time by a large relief organisation. We feel that this information is highly relevant and helps explain some of the events and characteristics of the village.

 

In addition to an informative visit to our first village, our Man of Peace took us up to another village which we had never visited. This village, and one nearby which we have not yet been to, are both significantly poorer, more isolated and hidden. This community is from an ethnic group called the Lahu people who are practising animists. With no electricity, running water, paved roads or schools beyond a small preschool run by one young woman, this community’s situation is quite desperate. A potential Champion has been identified in a man who happens to be the Village Chief’s son. GHNI team members are planning a return visit in the coming weeks to further assess the community as well as to visit both the neighbouring village (which has not been visited yet) as well as to check in on our original village.

 

Finally, GHNI has hired our first Thai teammate! Her nickname is Som* (meaning “Orange” ― Thai people use nicknames given at birth and reserve their true name for official documents). Som has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and has over 10 years of experience working with NGOs in the mountains of Northern Thailand. Som has been working with us in an unofficial capacity for a number of months now, so we are excited to officially welcome her on board!

 

Transformational Community Development (TCD) Update

  • Water ― The newest village we visited has no running water, but has some pipes using gravity to bring water from a nearby stream into the village.
  • Food ― Based upon our first visit, food in the community seems sufficient in calories (primarily rice) yet perhaps lacking in nutrients and protein. Further investigation is needed.
  • Income Generation ― Nearly everyone in the community is a small-scale farmer.
  • Education ― A small preschool is located outside the village and is staffed by one young woman. Roughly 4-5 students attend this preschool. All other school-aged children must leave the village to attend school in another town, around 45-minute, semi-treacherous, motorcycle or truck ride away.
  • Wellness ― There are no clinics in the community with the nearest one being about a 45-minute ride away in good weather. Historic health issues may include water-borne illnesses. No current health issues have been discussed as of yet. Further investigation is needed.

 

Thank you!

 

Trey

GHNI TCD Staff

*For purposes of safety and wellbeing, “Som” is a pseudonym for the individual being helped by this project.

 

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