Written By: Jingkhu Xiong
Tak, Thailand – On March 20, Hmong in Thailand collected all the supplies and delivered to help Hmong-Myanmese after a fire destroyed 26 houses in Panata Village in Myanmar (Burma).
After the news of a fire that destroyed a Hmong village had released to the public both in Thailand and oversea, a Hmong couple in Tak province decided to launch an aid relief campaign to seek donations to help those victims.
Mr. Faang Coua Moua, 30, and his wife Mrs. Chee Moua, 30, started the campaign on March 9 – 19. They used their house in Ban Tak district, Tak province, as the place to collect all the supplies. Their aid relief campaign was one of the many campaigns carrying by Hmong in Thailand.
“I released the news and campaign through my radio at FM 95.50 MHz and also on Facebook to ask for donations to help those Hmong victims in Myanmar”, Mr. Faang Coua said. This way it could reach many people out there, he mentioned.
He said about 90 percent of the donors were Hmong while 10 percent were from Thai and foreign communities, but they donated more financial help than Hmong donors.
“When people donate supplies, my wife and I will use our car to pick up the items”, he said. Other helpers are his brother, sister-in-law, and nephew who assisted to organize all supplies at home.
This couple also opened a campaign account where donors can deposit money to help those victims. Mr. Faang Coua Moua said that the campaign account was closed on March 19 and it had 58,050 Baht deposited into the account. Also, he had received 11,070 Baht through the mails and 6,000 Baht in cash.
There was a company owned by foreigners also donated 30,000 Baht to buy rice to aid those Hmong victims in Myanmar, he said.
“My wife and I also donated 20,000 Baht, so the campaign has raised a total of 125,120 Thai-Baht”, he said during the interview.
This aid relief campaign also received many supplies such as rice, clothing, food cans, substitute noodles, candy, formula, cooking oil, salt, and home medicine. Other kitchen items are such as pot, plate, spoon, pan, bucket, cup and ladle.
They used five trucks to deliver the supplies to Panata Village in Myanmar, and there were 30 volunteers join the trip. “We travelled about 200 km (124 miles) to reach our destination,” he said. In addition, he also paid 3,000 Baht to each truck for transporting fee.
When the group arrived at the village, those Hmong villagers were happy when they see the team with the supplies. Mr. Faang Coua said that Panata is one of the poorest villages he has ever seen.
“Some people said thanks, some cried, and some came with a happy face,” he said. “We were very happy that we could help our community, and I hope that these supplies and grants will help them to start over their new lives again”.
The fire happened on March 6, 2014, at Panata Village, a Hmong village in Myanmar. This tragic incident affected more than 90 villagers and at least two victims injured, while a mother of three children committed suicide after the fire.
This Hmong village locates at the border of Kayin State (Karen State), Myanmar, and Phop Phra district, Tak province, Thailand. There are about 60 households in the village and all these Hmong villagers haven’t gained Myanmese citizenship. However, Myanmar government had sent troops to build bamboo houses as temporary shelter to help those who have been displaced.
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