Guiding the Blind
Last week Pi Bee and Noon followed a tour guide training in Ayutthaya. This training was focused on teaching guides how to work with blind tourists. The training was held from the 19th until the 21st of June. The Thai Research Fund (TRF) hosted the event in cooperation with the Thai Responsible Tourist Association (TRTA), Nutty’s adventures, Seable and the Thailand association of the blind. Every tour guide in Thailand who was interested could join the three day program.
During the training tour guides would learn more about guiding blind people by practicing with blind people but also by experiencing what it’s like to be blind. During one of the exercises they paired up a blind folded person with a non-blind folded person to practice leading a blind person to a certain place (e.g. toilet).They also went on a boat trip to experience how to explain surroundings to a blind person and had dinner blindfolded. On the last day of the training the newly learned skills were brought into practice during a tour with blind people. They visited a village and temple with them and the tour guides had to make sure to assist them where needed. At the end of the training everyone received a certificate.
We are happy that new initiatives like this emerge so more markets can be served in the future. As a social enterprise we are for the inclusion of everyone and we are excited that more knowledge is spread on how to serve people with disabilities. In the future there will be more training events like this one but then aimed towards guiding people with other disabilities.
Sustainability Training in Ban Talae Nok Village
Last weekend Pi Tui and Pi Nat gave a presentation to the community members of Ban Talae Nok. This presentation was part of a three day training program (21st – 23th of June) hosted by the community development department (DCD) of the ministry of interior affairs. All 32 members of the community and the chief of the village were present. We are happy to see that so many people were interested in learning more about sustainability.
During the presentation the people from Ban Talae Nok were told ways in which they can be more sustainable. A large topic covered was to stop using single use plastic and instead use refillable water bottles and reusable shopping bags; use energy efficient light bulbs; recycle waste and don’t use chemicals but use natural products instead. The chief was suggested to ask the school to teach their students how to manage their waste in a proper way. Furthermore, the community can start using more natural and locally sourced products for their handicrafts (e.g. batik).
Another topic that was discussed during the presentation was how to be a good host. There are certain aspects that are important such as being passionate and service minded. Nowadays with all the competition it’s also important to offer a unique experience. This can be achieved by offering guests food that is unique to the area for example.
We are also happy to announce that Ban Talae Nok was selected by the DCD to become an OTOP village. OTOP stands for One Tambon (sub-district), One Product. This program supports local entrepreneurs in all of Thailand. They stimulate them to improve the quality and promotion of their products. Ban Talae Nok will from now on sell more products besides their handmade soap. Some examples are shrimp paste, tie-dye, handmade key chains and cashew nuts.