All-star teams unveil artworks to support NAMJAI FOR REFUGEES
BANGKOK, Thailand, July 23 – After months of hard work and anticipation, eight celebrities today unveiled their inspired creations to enthusiastic supporters in the latest chapter of the UN Refugee Agency’s “NAMJAI FOR REFUGEES” campaign.
NAMJAI, which means generosity in Thai, is the spirit behind a UNHCR movement that mobilizes the goodwill and kindness of Thai people to help rebuild the lives of more than 100,000 Myanmar refugees living in Thailand’s border camps. Launched in January, the campaign tasked high-profile local personalities such as actress/model Praya “Pu” Lundberg and singer Saharat “Kong” Sangkapricha to team up and seek support for artistic missions.
On Saturday, the all-star teams turned up in full force to present their artwork as part of a three-day festival organized by UNHCR on the first floor of Bangkok’s Siam Centre.
Pu and designer Jirat “Sanshai” Subpisankul modelled their limited-edition T-shirt to highlight the situation of refugee women. “Women often bear the brunt of war and displacement, yet they are the ones who hold the family together in difficult times,” Pu told supporters. “That’s why we designed this guardian angel to protect them and their loved ones. By backing our team, you are extending your hand to them too.”
Kong and best-selling songwriter Jakrawut “Van” Sawangpol played a new song thanking supporters for their empathy. “This song is very special to us and we are happy to see the kindness of Thais to refugees who have suffered so much,” said Kong. “You have made a big difference.”
Actor Sunny Suwanmethanont and film director Piyakarn “Mook” Budprasert screened a short video about the infectious spirit of NAMJAI. “Our film explores the beauty of Thai generosity, showing kindness to everyone in need no matter who they are. Our supporters have shown that together, we can really pay NAMJAI forward.”
Wongthanong “Nong” Chainarongsingha, who founded all-time favourite magazine “A Day”, worked with famous illustrator Pattarida “Pang” Prasarnthong to produce a book that provides the sequel to “Life of Pathu”, a video about the life of refugee children that has been viewed four million times since January.
“Life of Pathu touched our hearts and we all want to know what happens to him next,” teased Nong. “This special book looks at how the kind support of Thai people has changed the lives of refugees like Pathu.”
Following the multi-media extravaganza, the teams set up shop in four thematic booths and presented their creations to people who had helped accomplish their mission. They spent the afternoon in a funfair atmosphere – singing karaoke, filming in the studio, designing T-shirts and discussing books.
“This is our way of saying thank you to everyone who is helping refugees in Thailand,” said Ruvendrini Menikdiwela, UNHCR Representative in Thailand. “You don’t need a big name to make a difference; a big heart will go a long way too.”
While the celebrities’ mission has been completed for now, the “NAMJAI FOR REFUGEES” campaign will continue. People who approach UNHCR’s fundraising teams (https://www.unhcr.or.th/support/schedule) in the coming weeks can also enjoy the fruits of their favourite stars’ labour. Supporters can also donate to refugees in Thailand through https://www.unhcr.or.th/namjai4refugees/missions/th and join UNHCR’s global petition to stand #WithRefugees at https://www.unhcr.or.th/supportrefugees.
Your Namjai means the world to the refugees.
For more information please contact
Thanas Jarulratanamedha (Mint)