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Letter from the Governor: Helping those in need

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Governor Chamroen Tipayapongtada is a Phuket native with a master’s degree in political and administrative science from the National Institute of Development Administration. He served as the island’s vice governor from 2012 to 2014.

Here he talks about his mission to help local people in need live a better life and to work together to establish the island’s image as a world-class destination.

PHUKET: Phuket already has strong private sectors driving the tourism industry forward. I have faith in them, as we have very high standards for tourism marketing and services. I have no doubt about that.

However, one thing that I want to do during my time as governor is to help people in need earn a better income, so that they can have a higher quality of life. They are often overlooked in this regard.

We need to support these people in order to make their communities stronger and help them move forward.

I am not just saying that I want to start a project – I am actually going out into the communities and talking to the residents. If they have anything to say or complain about, they can just talk to me directly.

November 16 was my second time visiting Phuket’s less fortunate communities since I took office last month. I call them my ‘Evening Home Visits’.

One such community is the sea gypsy village in Sapam.

There are 44 families with about 240 people in total. I had a chance to talk to them about how they can generate sufficient income in their everyday lives.

I have also talked to the community leader about supporting and developing the community’s products to enable them to make more profit. This will supply the locals with additional income from something other than fishing.

Relevant officials also go into the communities with me, such as those from the Provincial Electricity Authority and the Phuket Water Authority. They can talk to people about how to take care of the community. I do not want to see poor people using more expensive utilities than other people.

I have assigned officers from the Phuket Non Formal Education Center to take care of their education. Their children deserve the chance to study just like other children, so that they grow up confident and become contributing members of society.

Officers from the Phuket Provincial Health Office have also come to educate villagers about the risks of dengue fever, and to give free physical checkups. They were also provided with food from the Phuket Commerce Office.

Additionally, we talked to them about drugs and drug use in the community and how damaging it can be for the village.

I need to thank all of the officers who have become involved with my mission and helped make it happen, as I cannot do it alone. This is something that I will continue to do and I appreciate all of the help and support I have been given.

And, in the spirit of building stronger communities, I am initiating a ‘one month one day’ project that will see every community coordinating with their local government to do volunteer work, such as cleaning the roads or cutting trees. They must volunteer themselves and may even be able to receive a budget from their local government.

Everyone deserves a better quality of life. Some people are not fortunate enough to be able to do it by themselves, so it is up to us to think about what we can do to help others.

— Chutharat Plerin

 

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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