British Asian Christian Association have carried on their food provision in Thailand ensuring desperate asylum seeking families from the South Asian Christian diaspora are getting food essentials.
Bangkok’s lockdown lifted at the end of August but many businesses are still closed and asylum seekers continue to struggle as opportunities for illegal work are limited.
Asylum seeker families in Thailand live an extremely difficult life. They status remains illegal even when their asylum cases are being investigated or approved by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Those who are discovered are arrested and kept in the brutal Immigration Detention Centre of Bangkok. Large operations every year ensure the IDC is filled to capacity with women and children often locked in the same facilities. This is despite Thailand having signed UN Conventions for protection of children. Several deaths in the IDC have occurred due to alleged medical negligence causing huge anxiety in the Pak-Christian asylum seeker community.
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:
Before our efforts and our work with Special Protection Officer Peter Trotter waiting times from registration to decision by UNHCR could take up to 7 years. Since our submission of a 467 page report on persecution in Pakistan waiting times for all refugees (of which Pak-Christians make up close to 90%) has reduced to two years. This is due to the report being used as a tool to gain a 300,000 euro grant from the EU Commission resulting in 8 new officers who rapidly reduced the backlog (click here)
Now our support includes help for mothers with husbands in the IDC and food packages for often starving families, trying to cope with the financial difficulties arising from Thailand’s unwillingness to sign UN conventions for asylum. We share images and videos of our latest group supported with food parcels.
We are currently funding 10 families a month but with your help we can support more of the thousands of South Asian Christian asylum-seeker families needing help with food packages. If you would like to help by donating towards this work please donate (here) or email firstname.lastname@example.org with other offers of help.
We have also received several requests for us to help with the removal of Pak-Christian women from the Bangkok Immigration Detention Centre. To bail them out we need to raise 50,000 baht (£1100) per person. On occasion the Royal Thai Government allow the release of women from the IDC, especially those who have children or a sickness. Currently the bail process has been opened and we would like to apply for freedom for two women who have approached us for assistance. If you would like to donate to this work please donate (here)