Pattaya grassroots endure severe hardships during Covid-19 economic slump

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Poramet Ngampiches and Praichit Jetapai together with their team carry bags of food and supplies through the mud paths, stopping at every household to hand them out.
Poramet Ngampiches and Praichit Jetapai together with their team carry bags of food and supplies through the mud paths, stopping at every household to hand them out.

In these times of economic hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic, people from all walks of life are rallying together to help those who have become destitute for want of just the simple needs such as food, water and some daily amenities.

The good thing is, the people of Pattaya and the city fathers have not forgotten nor overlooked the suffering grassroots of our community, which are many in number.



Donations are received on a daily basis and distributions of food and necessities are made to the needy either from stationery stalls set up around the city and neighborhoods or by mobile teams visiting the rural communities in the region.

On May 11, Poramet Ngampiches, Assistant to the Minister of Culture, together with Ekasit Ngampiches, President of the Pattaya Business and Tourism Association, Praichit Jetapai, President of the YWCA Bangkok Pattaya Branch and Pattama Chanchiew, Director of the Social Welfare office of Nongprue led a team of volunteers to Mabsong-Nongyai community where they distributed rice and dried food to the more than 100 households in the village.

A total of 500 kgs of rice and 3000 eggs, along with relief bags were handed out that day.

Mabsong-Nongyai community, just off Highway 7, is a part of greater Pattaya City, but this rather primitive little village has neither the tall buildings nor shopping malls or any of the modern amenities that the residents can boast to the outside world. In fact, the village doesn’t even have proper roads.

Poramet Ngampiches meets the inhabitants of this dwelling to give them their food packages.
Poramet Ngampiches meets the inhabitants of this dwelling to give them their food packages.

The inhabitants live in little ramshackle huts and shelters. The majority of them have jobs in town, some drive baht buses and many earn their keep doing small businesses, such as food stands, and some operate down-to-earth businesses of renting out beach chairs. A large number of the residents are employed by the hundreds of tourism-oriented businesses in town.


On the whole they earned just a little if not sufficient money to live from day to day. And yet they are content.

As if their existence was not challenging enough, the COVIC-19 pandemic struck, taking away what little work they had and left them with zero income.

The team of volunteers go through puddles in the dirt path giving care packages to every household.
The team of volunteers go through puddles in the dirt path giving care packages to every household.

With the country in lockdown mode, no more tourists can come to Pattaya. Shops closed leaving workers unemployed, beaches were ordered off limits, so no more food stands and beach chair rentals. The lock down prevents people from going around town, so baht buses have no passengers and are now parked idly at home. The overall situation looks grim.



Samruay Wichit, a 61-year-old resident said, “On behalf of the residents of Mabsong-Nongyai community, I thank you for your kindness and generosity. We are going through a terrible time, but with the help of so many good people who care for us, we will remain strong and pray that this nightmare will all be over soon.”

Ekasit and Poramet Ngampiches meet a family in front of a motorbike repair shop.
Ekasit and Poramet Ngampiches meet a family in front of a motorbike repair shop.
Every household received rice, dried food and eggs.

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Living conditions of the villagers are very simple and their only needs are food and shelter.
Living conditions of the villagers are very simple, their only needs are food and shelter.