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UNHCR Donates Cash, Lamps to Thai Flood Survivors

A Japan Tsunami survivor has a UNHCR solar lamp lights her up in the darkest moment.


BANGKOK, 21 OCTOBER 2011 -- The UN refugee agency is donating cash and solar lamps to Thais affected by the worst floods in 50 years as a gesture of gratitude for the country’s hospitality in hosting refugees for nearly four decades.

UNHCR plans to distribute 5,000 special eco-friendly solar lamps to floods survivors in remote areas where electricity has been lost. UNHCR distributed similar lanterns to the area of Japan hit by earthquake and tsunami in March this year. UNHCR will also make its own cash donation of 50,000 $US (1.5 million Baht).

UNHCR has mobilized its highly effective team of fundraisers, who normally meet Thai people in shopping malls and offices, to also raise money for disaster relief. In addition to raising money for UNHCR’s operations in nine refugee camps in Thailand, they now are informing the Thai public that their first two month donation will go to flood relief operation.

Last week UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Gutteres wrote to Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra expressing sympathy “for the loss of life and the devastating consequences being wrought by the floods.”

He also offered “solidarity” and said the UNHCR office in Bangkok “stands ready to support the Thai authorities in any way possible.”