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Letter from Thailand

Ditto Much

TRIBE Member
Letter from Thailand

The following is a letter from my friend Maggie who is currently working in Thailand with a group building schools and opportunities to prevent young girls being sold into our tricked into lives of prostitution. Its not really political you might say, more of a personal interest story. If anyone is interested in the kind of work she is doing or working for NGO's around the world I can ask her for details on the various groups she interviewed with. Many of them are sponsored by the Canadian government and many of them are also specifically targeted to people our age.





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Sawat dee kha

I spent the most interesting part of my day today at the Human Development Foundation in a slum area in Bangkok called Klong Toey. This centre is run by a colourful character named Father Joe, an American priest who came to work in the slums of Bangkok many years ago. The Mercy Centre is very nice and clean with spacious grounds. I was there with a group of Save the Children staff in Bangkok for a conference. We visited the Aids hospice where Aids patients rested. We were also shown the kindergarten and school area for underprivileged children. The HIV positive kids went to school and played with the rest, no discrimination made...except if a child bled, then they were sent home.

In the ward for babies with HIV/AIDS, there were maybe about ten babies and children with HIV/AIDS. One girl was 8 years old and had only gotten full-fledged AIDS a year ago. Now she is too weak to go to school. I didn't feel alot of emotion seeing the kids because they were asleep and didn't show any pain. One boy, maybe 3 years old, stood up in his crib and began a plaintive whine. I walked over to him and asked with my hands what he wanted...he pointed to the water tap. I looked over to the caretakers to see what I should do, they indicated that I could pick him up. So I carried him over to the water canteen and poured him a glass. He gulped it down and ran after a ball on the floor. We began to play pass with ball and I was so happy to play with him. Then I had to go...it was only after that I thought of the scabs on his face and the palour of his skin. How to explain what is felt when you know a boy has sickness and pain waiting for him for the rest of his life. Injustice, helplessness, despair...

It really puts a perspective on things. When something like the AIDS epedemic is faceless, it's easier to rationalize...it's when the human factor shows so clearly that it becomes hard to swallow.

Tomorrow, I'm off to Vientiane, the capital of Laos...time for a visa run. I'll write more of my adventures later. Hope you're all healthy and well.

Maggs
 

mondo

TRIBE Promoter
Originally posted by Ditto Much
Injustice, helplessness, despair...

It really puts a perspective on things. When something like the AIDS epedemic is faceless, it's easier to rationalize...it's when the human factor shows so clearly that it becomes hard to swallow.

Maggs


It is a serious epidemic. I wonder to myself if the richest nations of the world are somewhat responsible for not educating and supplying condoms, etc to all the third world nations to try and stop or control the AIDS crisis. It should never have become a crisis- but the rich nations knew and allowed it to happen. Now that it is an epidemic, then it's ok to do something about it...??? How weird and confusing is the world we live in?
Prevention should be priority number one.


Officer/cop: "Sorry, but we can't help you UNTIL a crime has been committed."
 

Ditto Much

TRIBE Member
Re: Re: Letter from Thailand

Originally posted by mondo
It is a serious epidemic. I wonder to myself if the richest nations of the world are somewhat responsible for not educating and supplying condoms, etc to all the third world nations to try and stop or control the AIDS crisis. It should never have become a crisis- but the rich nations knew and allowed it to happen. Now that it is an epidemic, then it's ok to do something about it...??? How weird and confusing is the world we live in?
Prevention should be priority number one.


Officer/cop: "Sorry, but we can't help you UNTIL a crime has been committed."

We can't get food and water to many of them, getting condoms to them is almost impossible. Many fo the worst hit areas don't have stores as we think of them. They don't have daily delivery of anything let alone condoms, to make matters even worse there is a very strong cultural bias against using them.

Sending books to some of these areas isn't possible, sedning birth control is more difficult than sending guns.
 

KickIT

TRIBE Member
More money is made in treatment of a disease than in the prevention of it. I wonder how many pharmaceutical lobby groups fought to restrict aid and education to nations dealing with this epidemic?

*c*
 
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