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Report: 2011 Thailand Flood Disaster Response


A Donor Report on Projects & Impact One Year After the Disaster

INTRODUCTION

An unusually heavy monsoon season followed by Tropical Storm Nock-ten in late July 2011 led to the worst flooding in Thailand in over 50 years. During the fall of 2011, 65 of Thailand’s 77 provinces were affected as flooding spread across northern, northeastern and central Thailand, including the capital of Bangkok and the historic capital, Ayutthaya. By January 2012 when the floods finally receded, 815 people had been killed and 13.6 million people were affected. The World Bank estimates the total damage from the flood at US$45 billion, making it the fourth most costly disaster in history.

The disruption in the manufacturing industry caused global shortages in hard disk drives, a major export of Thailand, and regional automobile production. Though factories and industrial estates were damaged, it was the low-wage local employees who were most-affected, not only by the flood itself but also by subsequent employment termination, disruption, or re-negotiation of wages.

Due to the duration and breadth of the floods, Give2Asia focused its relief and recovery efforts on establishing mechanisms for long-term support for victims such as help accessing government services. In total, Give2Asia raised $1,001,814 for regional flood response. Give2Asia continues to assess long- term needs in affected communities and plans to grant the remaining $146,840 in the coming six months. Thanks to all our donors and supporters who made this important work possible.

Ninety-five percent of all funds received by Give2Asia go to local charitable groups working to help disaster survivors. Five percent will go to our work coordinating with and supporting these partners.

PEUAN PEUAN: PROGRAM FOR INCOME GENERATION & EDUCATION

Peuan Peuan is the Thailand program of Give2Asia’s partner Friends International, which works across Southeast Asia to provide comprehensive solutions for the epidemic of street children and drug abuse.

With a grant from Give2Asia, Peuan Peuan provided immediate relief to areas of Thailand where sanitation, electricity, food, water, and other essential services were shut down. Peuan Peuan also provided reports to the Royal Thai Government and the United Nations on needs in these areas.

In addition, Peuan Peuan helped 25 vulnerable families develop income through home-based production. The income generated through this program will allow the 60 children from the families to access education and decreases the likelihood that they will be required to enter the labor force before they finish their education.

Grant amount: $22,752 (Give2Asia Thailand Flood Relief Fund 2011)

RAKS THAI FOUNDATION: ASSISTANCE FOR WOMEN & CHILDREN

Starting in early November 2011, Give2Asia partnered with Raks Thai Foundation to provide basic relief services and emergency supplies to 4,000 women and 1,000 children from Ayutthaya and Lop Buri provinces.

The Raks Thai Foundation has over 10 years of experience working with women and children in Thailand. After an initial assessment and interviews, Raks Thai began providing services for maternal and child health, hygiene and provision of basic emergency supplies. In addition, Raks Thai provided counseling for vulnerable people, employment assistance, and psychosocial support for children.

Following this successful campaign, Give2Asia and the Seagate Disaster Relief Fund supported Raks Thai Foundation in its expanded efforts to help women and children in Ayutthaya, an area especially hard-hit by the floods. Program activities concentrated on disaster risk reduction in 30 communities across Ayutthaya. Raks Thai trained 180 community leaders, organized 20 learning-camps to specifically teach women and children about disaster risk reduction, and helped rebuild the city by draining stagnant pools and planting trees. In total, an additional 1,200 women and 6,000 children benefitted from the second stage of this program.

Grant amounts: $50,000 (Give2Asia Thailand Flood Relief Fund 2011); $100,000 (Seagate Disaster Relief Fund)

THE MIRROR FOUNDATION: LOCAL DISASTER WARNING CENTER

The Mirror Foundation has worked to improve the lives of children from hill tribes in Thailand since 1991. During the flooding in 2011, Give2Asia partnered with The Mirror Foundation to manage relief and recovery in northern and central Thailand.

The Mirror Foundation began by developing a Coordination Center to share resources, connect organizations, and develop volunteer systems. A Local Disaster Warning Center and website were also created in Chiang Rai province to communicate and gather assistance for future disasters. Based on its program for disaster risk-reduction and preparedness, The Mirror Foundation also produced two videos and a pamphlet on community disaster preparedness for use in a regional campaign to educate communities and schools.

Grant amount: $50,000 (Give2Asia Thailand Flood Relief Fund 2011)

THE ASIA FOUNDATION: PARTNERING FOR WORKERS’ RIGHTS

Beginning in November 2011, Give2Asia made two grants to The Asia Foundation in support of relief and recovery efforts in Thailand.

With the first grant, The Asia Foundation and the Thai Labor Solidarity Committee (TLSC) established three Centers for Flood-Affected Workers (CFAW) to assist with legal support services. The three centers, in Ayudhaya, Pathumthani and Samatskorn, assisted with 7,350 legal support cases for migrants, contracted farm families and home workers to access government assistance, implement a worker recovery plan and create a network of assistance for victims in the industrial estate.

The problems facing workers after the flood were varied. Some workers were in debt to support ongoing living costs after employers either couldn’t pay their wages or outright terminated their employment. Where workers kept their jobs, many had their wages re-negotiated down to half the pre-flood level. Additionally, many employers themselves went into debt and relocated factories, or left employees indefinitely suspended and factories closed.

In April 2012, Give2Asia renewed support for the TAF project as it expanded to provide services for displaced families in need of repairs for homes and assistance applying for government benefits.

The Asia Foundation used the data and first-hand experience of operating the CFAWs to create and distribute educational materials on worker rights through public television, local news, and organizational communications.

Grant amounts: $30,000 & $79,841 (Give2Asia Thailand Flood Relief Fund 2011)

HABITAT FOR HUMANITY: BANG BAN EVACUATION CENTER

Though the 2011 floods affected an unusually large part of the country, many parts of Thailand are affected by annual and predictable flooding. The Bang Ban district of Ayutthaya is just such a place. Designated a “detention basin” by the government, this district is submerged each year in order to mitigate flooding in other major cities, including Bangkok. Each year water sits in the Bang Ban district for three months, submerging homes and forcing the 343 families that live there to relocate to higher ground.

With support from Give2Asia and the Seagate Disaster Relief Fund, Habitat for Humanity established an Evacuation Center for families from the Bang Ban district. During the dry season, locals will use the center for childcare and career development services, but will accommodate 80 families during the floods as well as act as a distribution center for cooked food and water.

Grant amount: $100,000 (Seagate Disaster Relief Fund)

WORLD VISION THAILAND: NONTABURI PROVINCE RELIEF

For more than a month during 2011, all districts of Nontaburi Province were cut off from the rest of the country by the long-lasting floods. In April 2012 Give2Asia and the Seagate Disaster Relief Fund supported disaster risk-reduction programs focusing on students and teachers at four schools in Sainoi and Bang Bua Tong districts in Nontaburi Province.

Community members were invited to join teachers and students at the schools for disaster preparedness training. In addition, teachers were provided with emergency tool kits, and educational materials were distributed throughout the community. In total, 183 students and teachers, and 50 community members attended the trainings, with another 1,000 community members reached through other materials.

As a part of a separate grant supported by Johnson & Johnson, World Vision rebuilt the flood-damaged Wichian Klin Upathum School, near Bangkok, providing 947 students and 52 staff access to new facilities.

Grant amounts: $48, 800 (Seagate Disaster Relief Fund); $76,290 (Johnson & Johnson Thailand Relief Fund)

THAI FUND FOUNDATION: SCHOOL RENOVATION

Give2Asia and the Seagate Disaster Relief Fund supported the renovation and reconstruction of two primary schools in the Sena District of Ayutthaya and the Muang District of Pathumthani.

The Chula Rat Wittaya School in Ayutthaya has been reopened to its 87 students and six teachers following the 2011 floods. The school, which was located next to an irrigation canal used to divert the Chao Praya river, required four new bathrooms and construction of a terrace system to prevent future flooding. The terraces will also be used by students to cultivate household vegetables and other agricultural projects.

The 277 students and 12 teachers at Wat Bot School in Pathumthani have also been able to return to school after two meters of water receded from the buildings. In addition to necessary renovations, Wat Bot was protected from future floods by constructing of a system of terraces.

Following renovations at their schools, students were brought to other damaged schools as volunteers to repair and renovate those campuses.

Grant amount: $30,000 (Seagate Disaster Relief Fund)

THAILAND MINISTRY OF PUBLIC HEALTH: HOSPITAL RENOVATIONS

Based on the concerns of local healthcare professionals, Pfizer and Give2Asia supported the Thailand Ministry of Public Health’s in its efforts to repair and restore life-saving medical equipment for 30-35 government hospitals in 27 provinces, including ventilators, defibrillators, generators, and EKG and X-ray machines.

Grant amount: $142,157 (The Pfizer Foundation)

ECO-WIZ: POTABLE WATER SYSTEMS AND TRAINING

With support from The Fyfe Family Foundation and Give2Asia Eco-Wiz was able to build and assemble two water purification systems to turn stagnant flood water into much-needed drinking water.

The two systems were installed on two university campuses at Mahidol University Saraya in Nakornpathom province and Thammasat University Ranglit in Phathumthani province. Each system is capable of generating 24 cubic meters of drinking water each day. After installation, Eco-Wiz trained local community members to use the system for future flood relief.

Grant amount: $39,000 (Fyfe Family Charitable Fund)

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