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Feeding the Vulnerable- Thailand's Third Covid Wave 2021

Silvia Dona | Bangkok, Thailand

On 26 June 2021, the Thai government ordered the closure of construction sites and construction worker camps in Bangkok and neighbouring provinces from 28 June to 28 July to control the spread of Covid-19. Movement of workers in and out of construction camps was also restricted. The order followed the emergence of clusters in construction camps in Bangkok most of whom are migrant workers.
Ratchabruck Road Workers Camp, Pathum Thani District, July 2021

Feeding the Vulnerable - Thailand’s fight against Covid

The countries of Southeast Asia largely escaped the worst of the coronavirus pandemic during its first year. Although Thailand was the first country to record a coronavirus case outside of China, in January 2020, the country suppressed the virus’ rampant spread for most of that year. Late in 2020, the country had recorded fewer than 5,000 total cases of the coronavirus. Thailand went for months without a single confirmed case of local transmission, until April 2021 when a cluster of infections started out in a luxury nightclub and rapidly spread to the slums and poorer neighbourhoods where cramped quarters and social distancing is near impossible. By June 2021 infections had also spread to prisons, construction camps and factories.

The Thai government ramped up its city-wide state of emergency and night time curfew, increasing restrictions in the capital city as well as other ‘dark-red' provinces. Borders were sealed and all non-essential businesses were forced to close in an attempt to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

 

 

The economic impact of the pandemic and the lockdown has been very severe, and its effects has been felt by the most vulnerable citizens.

I accompanied Icare Thailand Foundation into the slums, informal workers camps and refugee communities around Bangkok as life saving donations of food, medical aid and essential good packages were distributed. The hard work of the Foundation together with the tireless dedication of the volunteers within the different communities was and continues to be a ray of hope in dark and desperate times.

 

Bangkok, September 2021.

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