Ban Talae Nok Village, Thailand
Ladda Aharn, or Pink, as her friends call her, smiles as she welcomes a group of guests to her village on the Andaman Coast. Unlike the majority of visitors over the past few years, this group of visitors is not here to see the destruction wrought by the tsunami. Instead, they are here as volunteers to help with community development projects in Ban Talae Nok, a village of 67 homes situated in between the coral reefs and dense rainforests of Southern Thailand.
Life has not always been so easy for Pink – after the great wave of 2004, Pink had to abandon her education to find employment to support her family. When Andaman Discoveries started a community center in the village, Pink enthusiastically joined various projects and demonstrated strong leadership qualities.
Pink is now the all-star leader of the village youth and conservation group – over the last year they have restored a former shrimp pond, performed educational puppet shows about global warming, and hosted an international seminar with youth from six other countries.
Please consider sponsoring Pink’s monthly salary ($230) and project costs ($140) so she can continue in her role as a community leader while raising a family.
During a community assessment, WildAsia took note of her work: “You have a phenomenal leader in Pink. Her work with the youth group is inspiring. With her as a role model, the youth will be become effective community leaders.”
Pink’s ongoing projects include:
Waste Management: The Ban Talae Nok Youth group has been encouraging community members to Reduce, Recycle, and Reuse, and the village now has a trash bin for every home as well as in public areas. The youth group regularly collects and separates the garbage in the village and on the beach, and also makes fun recycled art. Recently, the group has been making accessories such as pencil cases and wallet form reusable materials. The donation supports the purchase of snacks and drinks after the weekly cleanup.
Organic Garden: Kitchen garden is highly successful, and supplies food for youth and adult meetings. Recently, a number of men in the village helped out by building fences and making fertilizer. The result is six garden plots where vegetables such as lemon grass, long beans, chilies, galanga, eggplants, and morning glory are locally grown. Approximately 20 houses have been given seedlings to grow fresh vegetables, with the goal of even more villagers growing their own food. Donations support tools and snacks on gardening days.
Landscaping: The youth group is working on building a fence along the main road with carefully planted greenery such as local leaf (Pak Leing), fruit trees like rose apple and mango, to enliven the village environment. Youths recently dredged and removed garbage from fresh-water ponds near village.
Community Forest: Recently, villagers have been concerned that outside investors might try to illegally reclaim the mangrove restoration area near the village. Pink organized an overnight camp to visit and survey the restored habitat. The survey found that new species are now establishing themselves without being planted, and that the replanted Nipa palm is already useful for villagers making thatched roofing from its leaves. The youth also interviewed village elders about the history of the area.
Contact: Bodhi Garrett firstname.lastname@example.org +66 8178 77344