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Songkhla soi dogs heading to the US

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Songkhla soi dogs heading to the US | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Workpoint News | Thai Street Paws Rescue

5 dogs out of 29 that had been left to die in an abandoned home in Songkhla are now heading to the US to meet their new owners.

Officials from the Division of Animal Welfare and Veterinary Service and Smiledog Home volunteers report that the 29 dogs and 8 cats were abandoned at a house in Songkhla. Two representatives from Smiledog are taking care of the animals in Songkhla as their health improves and the lucky 5 dogs prepare for their long plane journey. A team of vets from Song Tale Veterinary Clinic have been providing expert medical care.

The owner of Thai Street Paws Rescue, Tamara Johnston, is an Australian teacher who teaches in Songkhla. She has played a major role in saving these animals and is the reason why 5 of them will be traveling to the US in September. She has been rescuing stray dogs and finds new owners for them without any adoption costs, except the travel fees for the animals.

Siripun Knampromwong from Smiledog Home says that the dogs have been happier since the rescue. They are playing with each other and have enough space to run around. There are still some animals available for adoption, those who are interested can contact via the Facebook page.

STORY: Workpoint News | Thai Residents

Songkhla soi dogs heading to the US | News by The Thaiger Songkhla soi dogs heading to the US | News by The Thaiger

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Prachin Buri roadside flower seller gives yesterday’s earnings to Thai flood victims

The Thaiger



Prachin Buri roadside flower seller gives yesterday’s earnings to Thai flood victims | The Thaiger


A roadside flower seller in Prachin Buri, just to the north east of Bangkok, is giving all his earnings from yesterday to help flood victims in Thailand’s north east provinces. INN News reports that he was wearing a sign… “All earnings from today will be given to flood victims”.

Flower sellers are often seen at red lights around Thailand serving the ‘captive’ audience who buy the floral scented decorations ‘puang mah lai’ as good luck amulets. The price of one of the hand-made decorations is about 20 baht.

Chatri is originally from Chachoengsao province, just to the south. He says he’s been following the news about the floods affecting north-eastern provinces and feels extremely sad for the victims.

He has been selling flowers on the road for a while now and makes enough money to live comfortably. But all the earnings made yesterday will be sent to a government account to support the flood victims.

As soon as the flowers had sold out Chatri went to the local SCB Bank and deposited all the money taken for the day, around 1,000 baht, into an account. When the bank’s manager saw Chatri depositing the money staff also put in 1,000 baht as well.

Chatri’s kind act inspired drivers that saw him so they came to the back later in the day and put some more money into his good cause.

Thanks Chatri. You’ve done you bit and sacrificed a day’s earnings to help fellow Thais in distress.

Prachin Buri roadside flower seller gives yesterday's earnings to Thai flood victims | News by The Thaiger Prachin Buri roadside flower seller gives yesterday's earnings to Thai flood victims | News by The Thaiger


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Nepali climber pushing for record 14 peak record attempt

The Thaiger



Nepali climber pushing for record 14 peak record attempt | The Thaiger

The current record for climbing the world’s 14 tallest peaks is almost eight years. Now Nepali climber, Nirmal Purja, who served in the British special forces, has set a target of just seven months.

Purja arrived at the advance base camp of the 8,201-metre Cho Oyu yesterday, ready for the final phase of the last three peaks in his feat of astonishing endurance.

“Nobody believed I could do this when I first said it… I’m so glad to be inspiring generations of all ages through this endeavour. This is what keeps me going,” Purja told AFP by phone.

“This is not about me… it is to show what the human body can do. To establish a paradigm shift in perception of human potential,” Purja said.

Only a teenager when he joined the British Gurkhas, Purja or “Nims dai” climbed both the 8,848-metre Everest and Lhotse at 8,516 metres in a record 10 hours and 15 minutes in 2017.

This inspired the 36 year old to start “Project Possible”, scaling the 14 peaks, all higher than 8,000 metres, in seven months.

But doing so is radically ambitious. In the 1980s, it took Polish climber Jerzy Kukuczka seven years, 11 months and 14 days.

South Korean climber Kim Chang-ho managed it in about a month less – although he did, unlike Kukuczka and Purja, do it without supplementary oxygen.

Before he set off on his first expedition, Purja had a detailed tattoo of the 14 mountains engraved on his back, with colourful prayer flags tracing his journey to the peaks.

Sprinting up K2

Swapping his army boots for crampons, Purja quit the military after 16 years of service and re-mortgaged his house to begin his expedition and start raising funds.

Purja began his attempt in April with the 8,091 metre Annapurna, checking the illustrious “8,000ers” Dhaulagiri, Kanchenjunga, Everest, Lhotse and Makalu off his list in only a month to finish his first phase.

A month later, he was heading to Pakistan for the second part of his mission where he first tackled the notorious Nanga Parbat at 8,125 metres. 23 days later he was standing atop Broad Peak, his fifth and final mountain of the second phase.

Battling sleep deprivation to meet his target, Purja said he was almost sprinting up and down five of Pakistan’s highest peaks including K2, the second tallest in the world.

“I felt like this is one down and next to go (with every summit). We still have another to climb,” Purja said.

On track to make climbing history, the phenomenal mountaineer has in the process also set several speed climbing records this year.

This included his summits of Everest, Lhotse and Mount Makalu, three of the world’s five highest mountains, in a record 48 hours – and despite the deadly overcrowding this season on the planet’s top peak.

Purja also made headlines with his miraculous rescue operation of a Malaysian climber from Mount Annapurna after two nights in the open above 7,000 metres.

“It is only a matter of time until he completes his project, he has already proven his amazing capability,” said Mingma Sherpa of Seven Summit Treks, Purja’s expedition operator.

No flip-flops

Raised in a village in the northwest district of Chitwan, Purja said he did not even have flip-flops growing up.

“My life story tells anyone who doesn’t have privilege to dream about bigger things. Anything is possible if you put your heart and mind and give 100 percent to it,” he said.

He also hopes to lift the standing of Nepali climbers – Sherpas who often work as guides for foreign climbers in the Himalayas – as he feels they are not “given the right credit”.

But there is a potential spanner in the works. The Chinese government’s decision to close Mount Shishapangma for the season could potentially stymie Purja’s plans. But efforts are underway to seek a special permission for him.

“Dealing with all sorts from admin, logistics, fundings and politics; now my climbing mode is ON.”

SOURCE: Agence France-Presse

PHOTO below: National Geographic

Nepali climber pushing for record 14 peak record attempt | News by The Thaiger

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Lilly wages war on Thailand’s plastic

The Thaiger



Lilly wages war on Thailand’s plastic | The Thaiger

Skipping school to glide through a dirty Bangkok ‘klong’ on a paddleboard, Lilly fishes out rubbish in her mission to clean up Thailand, where the average person uses eight plastic bags every single day. Single-use plastic is now on the radar in Thailand and has become a hot topic on social media.

“I am a kid at war,” the bubbly 12 year old says after a painstaking hour-long routine picking up cans, bags and bottles bobbing in the canal.

“I try to stay optimistic but I am also angry. Our world is disappearing.”

Thailand is the sixth largest global contributor to ocean pollution, and plastic is a scourge.

Whether it’s for wrapping up street food, takeaway coffees or for groceries, Thais use 3,000 single use bags per year – 12 times more than someone from the EU.

In June, Lilly won her first victory: she persuaded Central, a major supermarket in Bangkok, to stop giving out plastic bags in its stores once a week.

“I told myself that if the government did not listen to me, it would be necessary to speak directly to those who distribute plastic bags and convince them to stop.”

This month some of the biggest brands, including the operator of the ubiquitous 7-Eleven convenience stores, pledged to stop handing out single-use plastic bags by January next year.

Mindsets have started to shift this year with the deaths of several marine mammals whose stomachs were lined with plastic, stirring emotions.

The demise last month of a baby dugong was mourned on social media, reviving discussion in the government over a proposed ban on most single-use plastics by 2022.

But critics say along with new rules there need to be enforcement mechanisms such as fines.

For now young activists like Lilly can help capture attention.

“You might be able to tune out all of the evidence and advocacy in the world, but it’s very hard to ignore a child when they ask why we’re trashing the planet that they have to live on,” says Kakuko Nagatani-Yoshida, regional coordinator for chemicals, waste and air quality with UN Environment.

Lilly wages war on Thailand's plastic | News by The Thaiger

‘It’s up to us’

‘Lilly’ is Ralyn Satidtanasarn’s nickname.

The US-Thai youngster started campaigning at the age of eight after a seaside vacation in southern Thailand where she was horrified by a beach covered in rubbish.

“We cleaned up with my parents, but that was not helpful because other waste was thrown out by the sea the next day,” she recalls.

Then came the global movement initiated by 16 year old Greta Thunberg, who has become a key face in the battle against global warming.

Inspired by the young Swede, Lilly did sit-ins in front of the Thai government buildings.

“Greta Thunberg gave me confidence. When adults do not do anything, it’s up to us children to act,” she insists.

Though she often skips class to carry out her activism, she will not be in New York alongside Thunberg for a protest on September 20 just days before the UN climate conference.

“My place is here, the fight is also in Southeast Asia,” she says.

Even if she sometimes wants to take a break and “go play” like other kids, she also takes part in cleaning sessions organised by local association Trash Hero.

Other activists praise her but say she is up against massive corporate interests.

The main obstacle is the petrochemical industry, one of the main markets for plastics, accounting for 5 percent of Thailand’s GDP and tens of thousands of jobs.

“Lilly is a very good voice for the youth of this country but the lobbies are very powerful and that makes any change difficult,” concedes Nattapong Nithiuthai, who set up a company turning discarded waste into flip flops.

She can also count on the support of her parents, who help her write speeches to the UN and government officials.

Her mother, Sasie, herself a former environmental activist, adds: “At first, I thought it was a child’s fad, but Lilly hung on, so I decided to support her.”

SOURCE: Agence France-Presse

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