Five powerful Thai women to know about on International Women’s Day

Kanticha Chumma, photo by CI Talks.

Today is International Women’s Day, and people across the world are celebrating women’s achievements and triumphs over adversity. In Thailand, women still face a number of barriers to equality. The country has deeply entrenched problems with abuse and trafficking of women, maternity leave, and a range of other issues. Yet, Thailand has several prominent, powerful female leaders. Below are five who you should know about.

Siripaporn Nuanthakhamjan

Professional snooker player Siripaporn Nuanthakhamjan competed at the Hi-end Snooker Club on Saturday night, becoming the second Thai woman to win the Women’s Snooker Championship.

The 23 year old defeated her Chinese rival Bai Yulu after competing under the best of 11 frames rule. Siripaporn received a cash prize of 331,000 baht for her win.

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Five powerful Thai women to know about on International Women’s Day | News by Thaiger
Siripaporn Nuanthakhamjan.

Kanticha Chumma

Kanticha Chumma, also known as Ticha Kanticha, has become a prominent figure in Thailand due to her impressive win as the best model in the reality show, The Face Thailand Season 2. But she has also become an advocate for sex education and challenged social norms in Thailand.

Two years ago, Ticha started a YouTube channel and launched a series of videos called “I Kan Teacha,” where she talks about sex and sex education. Through her channel, Ticha aims to promote sex positivity and eliminate the stigma surrounding the topic in Thai society.

Several Thai celebrities, doctors, and specialists have appeared as guests on her YouTube channel, even her sibling and mother. They have shared their experiences and swapped interesting facts about sex, sexually transmitted diseases, and other sex-related topics that most Thais see as taboo or stigma.

Ticha Kanticha sex education Thaiger Podcast
Photo via Facebook/ Ticha Kanticha

Kawinporn Winichthaoprathom

Kawinporn Winichthaoprathom is the founder of the animal shelter Baan Nang Fah. She has cared for over 2,500 stray dogs and cats at her shelter in the Muak Lek district in the central province of Saraburi, spending over 100 million baht and even selling some assets to provide for them.

In January, Kawiporn’s face was featured on a Hershey’s chocolate bar wrapper, ahead of International Women’s Day (today).

Hershey's women's day Thai founder of stray animal shelter
Photo via Facebook/ ผู้บริโภค

Paetongtarn Shinawatra

No matter what your views on Thai politics are, one can’t doubt that Paetongtarn Shinawatra is a powerful woman.

The youngest daughter of the Shinawatra clan, Paetongtarn declared in December that a vote for her Pheu Thai would eradicate poverty in Thailand.

The 36 year old promised a new era of social equality and an end to poverty in the kingdom if the people vote her party into power.

Five powerful Thai women to know about on International Women’s Day | News by Thaiger
Paetongtarn Shinawatra.

Cindy Sirinya Bishop

Model and actress Cindy Sirinya Bishop is the founder of the #DontTellMeHowToDress movement, which in 2018 was called Thailand’s #MeToo movement.

Cindy founded the movement after Thai authorities warned women not to dress too revealingly at Songkran parties, to avoid sexual harassment and assault. Cindy started the hashtag #DontTellMeHowToDress as a form of protest against these orders. She argued that society should “tell men to respect” women, regardless of what they are wearing.

Five powerful Thai women to know about on International Women’s Day | News by Thaiger
Cindy Sirinya Bishop, photo via cindysirinya.com.

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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