Vol. VI No. 15 - Tuesday
June 5, - June 11, 2007
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OUR COMMUNITY
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

FERC helps Burmese Child Care Center

Soroptimists launch chapter in Chiang Mai

UK expertise builds support for insect conservation

Scholarships awarded at Expats Club

FERC helps Burmese Child Care Center

On behalf of FERC, Pongsak Rodpothong (left) helps Khun Harme (right) to cradle the new baby at the Burmese Child Care Center.

Jan Verwers
The Burmese Child Care Center in Mae Sai cares for about 20 to 30 young children while their mothers are working at some of the local factories. The infants are aged between 1 and 4 years and therefore too young to attend school.
Khun Harme, a Burmese language teacher, set up this facility over 5 years ago and the only funds they receive come from the mothers who hand over a small part of their daily wages to pay for food and other expenses.
After a request for help, FERC, the Foundation for the Education of Rural Children, decided to supply the center with some needed educational materials like coloring books, paper, pencils, pens and toys. The concrete floor of the Center was covered with a wall-to-wall plastic cover, and for each child there is now a pillow, a blanket and a towel.
Recently Khun Harme was asked to take full-time care of an abandoned baby. FERC was able to provide the newest member of the community with a rocking cradle.


Soroptimists launch chapter in Chiang Mai

Soroptimist International of the South West Pacific held their inauguration of the new Soroptimist International of Chiang Mai chapter this past May 26 at the Amari Rincome Hotel.

Dr. Carolina San Miguel-Thompson (center) congratulated as new chapter President of the Soroptimists.
The meeting was headed by founding member and advisor Cory Croymans and President Dr. Carolina San-Miguel Thompson both residents of Chiang Mai.
Dr. Thompson has been in Chiang Mai since 1999 and obtained her Doctor of Philosophy, major in Commerce in 1981 from the University of Santo Tomas, (UST) in Manila, Philippines.
The local chapter has 18 charter members and is made up of Thais, Filipino, Americans, Belgian, Australians, Swiss, Canadian, Irish, Singaporean and Japanese nationalities.
The Soroptimist organization is a worldwide organization for women in management and many different professions. They are committed to advancing the status of women and human rights for all peoples and have been organized for more than 80 years. Soroptimist International is divided into four Federations of more than 3,000 clubs in 125 countries and territories around the world. Membership is by invitation and nominations as per their International by-laws.
The new members of Soroptimist International Chiang Mai pledged to promote, uphold and defend the following ideals: The sincerity of friendship, the joy of achievement, the dignity of service, the integrity of profession and the love of country.

The charter members at their first Soroptimist meeting in Chiang Mai.


UK expertise builds support for insect conservation

Thailand’s biodiversity is at risk because of human population pressures and there is an urgent need to assess and monitor endangered insects such as fireflies, butterflies and beetles.

Collecting, identifying insects in Thailand’s forests is key to further studies on biodiversity.
A major constraint to developing Thai expertise on insects has been the absence of standard reference collections essential for their identification. The Darwin project was designed to fill this gap by building the capacity of key institutions needed to conserve insect biodiversity. It has satisfied the aims of the Global Taxonomy Initiatives (GTI) and the Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) by strengthening relevant Thai institutions, providing a link between these institutions and the NHM, and has made effective use of taxonomic information, as laid out in the Thai National Report on the Implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (2002).
The project is based at the Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden with field work centred in both Doi Inthanon National Park and the QSBG. The project will be the cornerstone for Thai biodiversity and conservation research on insects by providing a state-of-the-art entomological depository and identification facility for insects in the QSBG, a prerequisite for generating the biological information needed for effective biodiversity conservation in Thailand.
UK expertise was used to establish a focus to help build and maintain the human resources, systems and infrastructure needed to obtain, collate and curate the biological specimens that are the basis for taxonomic knowledge.
The three year project on insect conservation began 1 June 2004 and ended on the 31st of May was a product of close collaboration between the Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden, Chiangmai (QSBG) and The Natural History Museum, London (NHM).
For more information on this project, contact Ralph Harbach at the Natural History Museum, London. Email: [email protected]

Researchers, students and assistants gather for the closing of the three year project at the Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden.


Scholarships awarded at Expats Club

The Pornsook Phutisatayakul-Johnson College Fund awarded 10,000 baht each to the well deserving high school graduates in Chiang Mai.

(back row l/r) Porramin Narata, Alan Hall, president expat club, Monthakan Intharasri, Phillip Johnson, seated l/r Witchuda Kumbaisee, Sutthiporn Ngammuangsakul, Rak Charoenmuang proud recipients of the Pornsook Phutisatayakul-Johnson College scholarships.

This grant is awarded to these students for their successful completion of their high school curriculum requirements and for their strong desire to continue their academic education at chosen colleges, universities or other post-high school institutes of higher learning.
These scholarships are administered through the Chiangmai Expats Club, a local community organization which has chosen to work in partnership with the citizens of Chiangmai and its surrounding communities.
Two scholarships, approximately ten thousand (10,000) baht each, will be given to the two most deserving graduating high school senior selected each year - one boy and one girl.
The scholarships will be funded by Mr. Phillip L. Johnson (Pornsook Johnson’s surviving husband), and also by donations contributed by Chiangmai expatriates (expats).
An eligible beneficiary must:
Be a student in his or her last semester of high school. Participating schools must be located either within the city of Chiangmai or within a 15 kilometer radius of the city. (Note: Students attending international schools are not eligible for this scholarship).
Have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.75 or higher.
Be able prove in writing that he or she has passed all academic requirements for promotion to a post-secondary educational institution, and must also show in writing his or her acceptance to any college or university either in the city of Chiangmai or elsewhere.
Prove in writing that he or she has demonstrated good behavioral standards during his or her final academic year at his or her current high school. (A letter of support from a teacher, instructor or school headmaster will suffice.)
Be a member of a family whose average monthly income does not exceed eighteen thousand (18,000) Thai baht.
Present a photo showing his or her house or other abode with family members being included in the photo.
Attend the announced expats club meeting with his or her parent(s) or guardian(s) to be presented the scholarship funds.
Use the funds toward the purchase of tuition, books, supplies, etc., required at the post-secondary educational institution where he or she will be in attendance.
Other eligibility criteria may be established by the Chiangmai Expats Club board of directors.



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