After we had a surge of donations last month we were able to put the money to good use serving an additional 10 Pak-Christin asylum-seeker families in Thailand.
Last month we initially shared food with 20 families then made a decision to provide 1000 baht to each of the families that we serve, as the costs for delivering food parcels became too expensive.
We share details at the end of this post of the 20 families that have benefitted from our recent distribution. The money will help towards rent and food and we would like to support more families desperate for some help in an increasingly difficult economy, where through no fault of their own they have been deemed illegal immigrants.
There are several thousand Pak-Christian asylum seekers in Thailand all of whom are treated as illegal immigrants, even though a large percentage have either UNHCR registration as an official asylum seeker or refugee. This forces them to work cash in hand jobs for a pittance under extremely difficult and unsafe circumstances. Last year a Pak-Christian father died after a fall from a high ladder and was entitled to no compensation, even worse the business that hired him was not punished. Babar Ishaq left behind a large family with a severely mentally-impaired child – they are one of our beneficiaries. Read more (here)
The problem lies with the Royal Thai Governments refusal to ratify international conventions for asylum seekers. Moreover the Thai Government is adamant that they will not allow refugees and asylum seekers to take things easy in their country. Regular arrests, a fine system and brutal conditions in their Immigration Detention Centres (IDC) have been created to make life as tough as possible for those seeking safety and refuge within their borders.
In our last report we explained that Pak-Christians in Thailand are facing increased discrimination due to the spread of the Indian Omicron variant and fears associated with that. Many of these Christians have been waiting for more than 6 years to exit Thailand living a life in limbo. Read more (here)
As you can imagine many of these families struggle to make ends meet and every single family there is reliant on hand outs and charity. Most of theses asylum seekers are from middle-class or wealthy backgrounds [the BBC report below suggests some where doctors, teachers and had other good employment] and have lost everything when fleeing a blasphemy allegation or rape and forced marriage. If you would like to help us with our grant programme you can donate (here).
British Asian Christian Association, helped the BBC film a secret documentary at the Bangkok IDC when one of our team travelled secretly travelled to Bangkok with a BBC film crew (click here), risking arrest to shed light on the situation faced by the asylum diaspora there. This link (here) is a report that we helped BBC’s Chris Rogers write which also contains a short video of one of our schools for asylum seekers. You can watch the full documentary here:
Gulzareen Daulat Khan