CS300 : Your Support Means The World To Them


The Long Awaited Picture  



Hmong : Ground Source  


Appended is a picture of the burnt site.

You will notice that about half of the visible accommodation area is burnt down. Eyewitness reports that remaining accommodation behind the hill has also been badly damaged by the fire.

So what you see here is basically what remains of the refugee camp.


Hmong : CD On Site  


Ben is now in Phetchabun to do a needs assessment in the refugee camp and at the same time discuss with the thai military on how we can assist.

Stay tuned for updates


Hmong : 25 May Report  


Situation/ update

Ben is already in Thailand and getting more info from the agencies as we speak.

If need be, he'll head back into the refugee camp to negotiate with the military on how RADION can assist. (Clothes, food etc etc)

Hmong : News Reports  


Thailand Arrest: 7,000 Hmong on Hunger Strike

Hmong refugees and asylum seekers at Ban Huay Nam Khao refugee camp in Thailand have gone on hunger strike to protest their threatened forced repatriation back to the communist regime in Laos and the caging of a camp leader by Thai authorities.


Refugees Hospitalized from Liquid Spray

Petchabun Province, Thailand (FFC) The burning of 850 to 1013 homes in the Hmong refugee camp at Huay Nam Khao has been reported. The disaster has left the majority of the refugees without shelter. The fires occurred on Friday, May 23 2008 starting at about 11:45 AM. Thai officials report the burning of the shelters was by the Hmong themselves that have been protesting their threatened repatriation back to Laos. Some protestors claim the Thai authorities are responsible for the fires.


Laos, Hmong Crisis: Thailand's Samak Uses Troops, Tear Gas*

WASHINGTON, May 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Thailand's Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej ordered Thai Third Army troops to use tear gas and pepper spray today to seek to force hundreds of Lao Hmong refugees onto eleven buses to repatriate them back to the communist regime in Laos that they fled.


*Unconfirmed report.

Hmong Lao : Fire Disaster Leaves Hmong Refugees Without Shelter  


Petchabun Province, Thailand - The burning of 850 to 1013 homes in the Hmong refugee camp at Huay Nam Khao has been reported. The disaster has left the majority of the refugees without shelter. The fires occurred on Friday, May 23 2008 starting at about 11:45 AM. Thai officials report the burning of the shelters was by the Hmong themselves that have been protesting their threatened repatriation back to Laos. Some protestors claim the Thai authorities are responsible for the fires.

*Source : FFC


In their eyes  


Sometime ago, my youngest auntie texted me over MSN after reading our monthly newsletter.

She asked me "Eugene, why do you reach out to these broken and destitute people. This outreach work is just so heart wrenching."

Why ? Because in their watery eyes I see a life shattered and living without hope. More importantly, when I look at my past, I was no different from them.

In the eyes of the young boy caught in drug addiction.
In the eyes of the destitute who has no will to live on.
In the eyes of the abused who lives in fear every day.
In the eyes of the cancer patient sick and knowing that its her last lap in her life.

In their eyes, i find strength to go on.


Streetkids : Found !  


Today I just received another great news.

You guys remember the boy which we featured in our previous newsletter ? The one who was abused by his parents and slammed against a wall till his face was bruised ?

Yes. After the outing, we tried unsuccessfully to locate him as his whereabouts are unknown which was terribly worrying.

Today we managed to locate him and this is what we found out.

This mysterious boy's name is Meng and he comes from a broken family. After his family broke up, his mother turned to alcohol and would abuse him physically when she is drunk (This is our first instance of a mother having an alcohol problem)

In fact, Meng was left under the care of his auntie and he has not been going to school for the last 2 years. We have spoken to the relatives and now Meng has just been put under the Streetkids program to help him get back to school.


Streetkids : Chaan  


Thank you all you dear supporters. Our boy Chaan has been sponsored by a kind lady.

For those who have written in offering to sponsor children, we'll let you know once another sponsorship opportunity opens up.

We have children coming in all so frequently but we do careful screening to ensure that sponsorship reaches the children who need it the most.


Cyclone Nargis  


Today we just had a meeting and RADION is doing a feasibility study on how to support the relief effort in Burma (in the area of sending physical relief to the affected area)

Conceptually, if we do activate our resources for this effort. We are looking at a full scale "Project Blanket! 2" where we'll require a huge amount of volunteers and sponsors to come together.

I'm looking at launching some 5-10 containers of relief (Clothes/food/medical) items up.

In the mean time, keep your eyes peeled as we wait for replies of a full list of needs assessment by local Burmese and international NGOs.


Streetkids Update  


We've just been informed by my staff that the streetkids have requested to stay at the shophouse together. As such my basement has been converted to their make-shift room.

Staying-in is an idea which my staff are all in favour of, knowing that when these children when left without guidance and roaming outside, they'll very likely get back into street gangs. As opposed to being sheltered at the shophouse, they learn to be responsible for their time and it builds stronger bonds with my existing staff.

Now we are just concerned that with the expanding number of children coming in. The basement may be overcrowded soon enough.

p/s : Chaan is now finally preparing to go back to school after a 2 year lapse. He is still waiting for a sponsor. Please let me know if you are keen to sponsor him. Email eugene@radion-international.org


Radion : Back for a couple of weeks  


Its kinda of strange. Businesses have their meetings in meeting rooms or over a game of golf.
Today as I got back to our outreach branch in Phetchabun, and my staff brought me to the jungle.

If you just hear the conversation and ignore all the mosquitoes, children screaming as they find a fish, you'll imagine it to be in a meeting room. But add the environmental sounds, you know that its just not the same.

Today we brought the kids out to the river to hunt for their dinner. It was a whole lot of fun and climbing up and down, into rivers and streams. But through it all, when you come back with aching muscles, you know you are getting on years.

Anyway, I'll be flying back to Singapore till end of the month to do some awareness building and get some paper work done. So the same rule applies. Those who need me to speak and present to your groups, please drop me an email and I'll slot you guys into my schedule.

Thats all for now. Heading to Bangkok tomorrow.

Streetkids : Sponsor Chaan  


Chaan is 13 years old but has been sniffing glue for more then a year. Now he is undergoing counseling and rehabilitation care with us.

Among all the streetkids, Chaan is probably the one who needs the most direction and guidance. Behind a strong and brave front lies a troubled boy who struggles to find acceptance after his family nucleus broke down. Many times during mass outings, he would sit all alone, think and tear.

He ran away from home and school several times when he feels hurt.

Among the streetkids, Chaan struck me the most because I see a life which is desperately searching for direction. Chaan has much potential for change, but he would need a lot of guidance and care.

To sponsor Chaan cost just SGD78/month. Please drop me an email at eugene@radion-international.org if you wish to help this kid.

Radion : Shophouse Update  


I arrived Phetchabun close to 9pm last evening, it was a heart-warming just to hear the streetkids cheering (even with my windows up) when my truck rolled to a stop at the shophouse. All these boys ran out and gave me hugs which was totally unexpected.

Today over lunch, Chaan asked me. "Pii Eugene, do I have a sponsor ? I would like to go to school"
I told him that I wanted to discuss the matter further with him before I commit to getting him a sponsor.

For my new readers, Chaan is an existing glue addict and he is struggling to kick the habbit as well. I love that boy not because he is a glue addict, but what I imagine this boy can potentially be.

I looked into his eyes and i see rejection, sadness and a broken kid hiding behind a facade. I want to help him but he needs to help himself first.

Today, he asked me again if he could go to school so I asked him, will he commit to the program. He said yes.

So now, I'm looking for one sponsor for this Chaan. Details to follow in the next post.


Streetkids : Gau's Birthday & Back To School  


Back to school with new uniforms.

Doing their homework

Gau's Simple Birthday Party.


Streetkids : 1st Day Of School  


This morning, Chaan came to the shophouse. (Chaan is our boy who is struggling to commit to the streetkids program) and he saw all the rest of kids in uniform, happily getting ready to go to school.

I was told by my staff that he just sat there quietly and they could see that he felt left out. Some children were asking my staff why is Chaan not going to school, we told them to give Chaan time to decide, once he decides to go to school he just needs to tell us. And we'll find a sponsor for him.

Many of you will think that we should have just enrolled him into school and "strongly encourage" him to school. But we think otherwise. We can force him to go to school, but we cannot force him to stay in school.

So this week, I'll be trying to squeeze some time to sit on the bridge with him and see if he is ready to re-attempt school.


Streetkids : Back To School !  


Now, just so everyone understands how difficult to get these boys back to school.

We had to speak to 2 school principals and one principal rejected these kids as their record books showed that they had been mischievous and grades were below average.

Only after much convincing, the second principal agreed to take the 4 boys in.

Today they just stocked up on all the stationaries and books.

Tomorrow, my boys will be heading back to school !