Present for the handover of the essential food supplies last Sunday (Oct 25) were Muang District Chief Somprat Prabsongkram, Karon Kamnan (Subdistrict Chief) Winai Chitcheaw and his social worker wife Pandalda “Khun Kan” Kongthong.
Also joining the Help Phuket Today Team of volunteers were Julian Lowry, General Manager of Le Meridien Phuket Beach Resort and his wife Nicola, as well as British International School representatives Magali Rolland, Boarding Parent with her team of students, and Neil Crossland, Secondary School Principal.
The handover was facilitated by the Karon District Administrative Division and took place at Karon Temple.
“Feeding 400 families seems like a lot but actually it’s just the tip of a very large iceberg. There are 10,000 people living in the Kata-Karon area alone, not to mention the rest of Phuket,” said Nicola Lowry.
Nicola explained to The Phuket News that the idea to focus special efforts on stricken families in the Kata-Karon area followed a conversation with Help Phuket Today founder Kath Cumming.
“Basically it started with Kath and I having a chat a couple of weeks ago about the situation in Kata-Karon because Kath knows it’s our area, and that Julian and I have already helped quite a bit, especially in the early days, but also because ’Help Phuket Today’ wanted to give their support to this area.”
“Kath as you know is one of the main people behind ’Help Phuket Today’ and who, thanks to donations from Phuket and people overseas, has already helped so many people in Phuket. I then contacted Khun Kan and from there ’Help Phuket Today’ decided Kata-Karon would be their next place to help,” she said.
“This was a joint effort, made possible from my side because of help from some of Le Meridien’s wonderful Australian guests. These guests gave funding to pay for food for 200 people, the other 200 came from donations to Help Phuket Today.”
“We would really love people to continue to help by giving donations,” Nicola said, and added that donations can be easily given via Help Phuket Today’s Weeboon donation page (click here).
“A donation of THB 250 (approx £6/USD 8/EUR 8/AUD 11) can feed a family of four for a week with the basics [rice, oil, sardines, fish sauce and noodles],” Nicola explained.
“Our biggest hope with what we did on Sunday, is that it will have a knock-on effect and that people will start donating again because the current situation is not going away. Phuket in particular relies heavily on tourism and quite simply, no tourists means no income which means no food,” she said.
“I am so happy to have been a part of this but it wouldn’t have been possible without the continued financial support of some of our wonderful Australian hotel guests, as well as the many individual donations to ‘Help Phuket Today’. With this support, we were able to give food to 400 families in the Kata-Karon area,” Nicola said gratefully..
A very special thank you went to several individuals: “Roger & Regina, Alison & Sherrin, Bill & Chris, David & Pauline, Michelle & Bruce, your latest donations fed 200 people today, you are all incredible. Thank you.”
“Special thanks also to Magali and her team of boarders at the British International School Phuket for not only helping to hand out the food, but for pre-bagging the 400 packs of food items and making 400 meaningful cards to go with them.”
“And finally, huge thanks to Kath for making it all happen and always doing such a brilliant job, and to Khun Kan, my go-to person in Karon who organised everything so well,” Nicola added.
“If anyone would like to help the people of Phuket, please contact ‘Help Phuket Today’ through their Facebook page (click here) or call Kath on +66 (0)650503464. Thank you.”