The end of the COVID-19 lockdown here in Thailand finds many families over extended, at the end of their savings, or in debt. They survived the prevention measures, but they are struggling to recover from their losses. The coming months continue to be uncertain and full of worry and hardship. Working with the local district government to strategically target and identify the most at risk families in each community, Shade Tree Foundation, our Thai partner foundation, distributed seeds to nearly 3,000 families in need who were affected by the COVID-19 crisis so that they will have food to eat in the coming months. For families still reeling from their financial losses, seeds equal hope.
During COVID-19, our relief and prevention efforts helped us to build a stronger cooperating relationship with the district government. While everything in Thailand was severely locked down to prevent the spread of COVID-19, our local team at Shade Tree Foundation had the privilege of continuing to operate. The Mae Sot District Office gave us special permission to carry out the Soap & Hope project. Each of our teams carried a copy of an official permission letter with them which allowed them to move freely during the lock down, past all check points, and reach communities that were cut off. This is how we were able to bring food and drinking water to cut off communities.
While gathering intelligence about which families had the deepest needs, we coordinated our information gathering efforts with the district office who were at the same time surveying families to assess the greatest needs in the local community. One of the needs listed in their household assessment was for seeds. Seeing the long term benefit to families in crisis, Shade Tree Foundation decided to provide an assortment of seeds for local garden vegetables for the families who indicated it as a top 3 priority for them. Thanks to generous support from donors like you, we had the resources on hand to do this.
On Tuesday June 23, our Thai foundation distributed 2,406 sets of seeds to families in need who have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis.
In an official ceremony, our team gave seeds to each of the sub district headmen in Mae Sot according to the number of families that expressed need in each of their districts. These were then distributed to those families and households by the village leaders.
In addition to that, our team members all around the province personally delivered over 500 packages to local families in need.
Thank you for providing sustainable support for resilient families who are doing all they can to survive and recover. For families who have put so much into just getting by now, this gives them the strength to keep going for the next three months.