Pattaya Relief Group presses forward in humanitarian undertaking

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Gudmund Eiksund (centre right), president of the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya presents a cheque of 200,000 baht to Steve Graham, chair of the Pattaya Relief Group for use in the joint humanitarian relief effort. Standing center rear are city councilor Banlue Kullavanich, Sinchai Wattanasartsathorn and Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh.

Donated speedboats back from first mission to Ayutthaya

Following the decision to go forward with relief missions to help the victims of the massive flooding in northern and central provinces of Thailand, the Pattaya Relief Group headed by Steve Graham, MD of Securitas Thailand approved the purchase of a 19 foot speedboat equipped with a 40 horsepower outboard motor valued at 230,000 baht. The boat was bought on October 12 and delivered to the Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation within 24 hours.

Sinchai Wattanasartsathorn, vice president of Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation said that the boat along with 6 other rescue boats left for Ayutthaya without delay where thousands of food packages and more than 5000 sets of medicine kits including 200 flashlights were successfully distributed to the ill fated residents of Thailand’s most revered historical landmark province.

Gudmund Eiksund (centre right), president of the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya presents a cheque of 200,000 baht to Steve Graham, chair of the Pattaya Relief Group for use in the joint humanitarian relief effort. Standing center rear are city councilor Banlue Kullavanich, Sinchai Wattanasartsathorn and Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh.Gudmund Eiksund (centre right), president of the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya presents a cheque of 200,000 baht to Steve Graham, chair of the Pattaya Relief Group for use in the joint humanitarian relief effort. Standing center rear are city councilor Banlue Kullavanich, Sinchai Wattanasartsathorn and Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh.

The Pattaya Relief Group (PRG) bought one smaller motorized boat for rescue missions in the Po Sarmton district of Ayutthaya province where residents have been stranded for weeks, many still waiting for supplies of food and water. Another boat was also donated to the villagers in Ban Na Po in Amphur Bangprahan district for the same purpose.

The startup PRG which comprises of Securitas Thailand, Bangkok Hospital Pattaya, Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya, Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation, Pattaya City Hall and Pattaya Mail Media Group is also of the conviction that all money donated into the Pattaya Relief Fund will be shared amongst other well intentioned organizations who are also active in the relief operations to help the alleviate the sufferings of the unfortunate people.

Neera Sirisamphan (3rd left) and Steve Graham (5th left) present their respective donations to Pol. Col. Choosak Panusamporn commander of Chonburi Immigration for their flood relief efforts.Neera Sirisamphan (3rd left) and Steve Graham (5th left) present their respective donations to Pol. Col. Choosak Panusamporn commander of Chonburi Immigration for their flood relief efforts.

To this end on October 13, Steve Graham along with Neerachorn Sirisamphan, business development director of the Bangkok Hospital Pattaya met with Pol. Col. Choosak Panusamporn, commander of Chonburi Immigration to assist him in the relief efforts that his department is also involved in. Graham donated 50,000 baht and Neerachorn donated 250 medical kits on behalf of the hospital.

On Monday October 17, Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh and city councilor Banlue Kullavanich hosted a meeting at city hall where the Pattaya Relief Group led a delegation to meet and brief city officials of action taken so far and exchange ideas of what could be done in the near future.

The sleek and sturdy 19 foot vessel adorned in the Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation colours, a day before she left on her maiden humanitarian mission.The sleek and sturdy 19 foot vessel adorned in the Sawang Boriboon Thammasathan Foundation colours, a day before she left on her maiden humanitarian mission.

Ronakit thanked the group on behalf of the mayor for their profound sacrifices and commitment to help the flood stricken people of Thailand. He said that the mayor himself was on a mission to Ayutthaya where  the city in association with the Jomtien Boating Association have set sail to the flooded province in a flotilla of 2 speed boats and 5 jet skis to deliver supplies to the people there.

Attending the meeting were President Gudmund Eiksund of the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya and Dieter Reigber the club treasurer. Gudmund said, “I am so sorry to hear of the suffering of so many people in Thailand. Our club has accumulated funds through our various fund raising projects and one part of it is always saved into what we call a ‘Disaster Fund’. Throughout the years we have contributed to various humanitarian projects to help flood and quake victims in Thailand and abroad.” With that he and his treasurer wrote a cheque for 200,000 baht which was handed over to the committee chair for use in this humanitarian mission. “Our members are ready to take part in the rehabilitation process and I will join the team to Ayutthaya when we go there to access the needs of the people during the rebuilding phase.”

Sinchai said, “The government is now slowly getting a grip on handling the distribution of relief goods, but we will still venture into areas that call for help.”

The committee decided that a concerted effort will be made after the floods subside, to go into the affected areas and make a survey of how they could help in the rebuilding and rehabilitation of people’s livelihoods which has been badly affected by weeks if not months of hellish conditions.

“We will help as many people as we can to get back on their feet and start rebuilding their lives again” said Steve. “We will look into helping repair or rebuild schools, hospitals and most especially help those who have lost everything so that they can start making a living to support their families.”

The Pattaya Relief Group welcomes corporate and individuals to participate in this joint effort by pledging donations in cash and kind. A report on the progress of this joint Pattaya humanitarian effort will be published on a regular basis in the Pattaya Mail. For more information or to pledge your support please contact: [email protected]