For decades, Thailand has been a place of refuge for Burmese fleeing civil wars between the central Myanmar government and armed opposition groups. The Mae La refugee camp, which opened in 1984, is the biggest of 9 camps along the border between Myanmar and Thailand. In November 2014, it numbered more than 40,000 refugees within a 2.5km² area. Inadequate health facilities and overpopulation placed not just the refugees but also those living in neighboring villages at risk of an epidemic.
Between 2007 and 2016, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL focused its activities on improving living conditions for the 40,865 Burmese refugees in the overcrowded Mae La Camp (November 2014), as well as for those living in the surrounding villages (approx. 1,800 people). Our teams provided assistance to refugees and displaced persons in Thailand, who during the fighting or movements of army troops had been forced to flee their homes for safety.
Our teams contributed their expertise in water, sanitation and hygiene by developing current facilities and training local populations to manage and maintain them. They also supported the building of latrines, organized their drainage, and produced natural fertiliser from the wastewater treatment plant.
SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL worked to ensure food security by offering income-generating activities (fish and frog farming, sack farming) that trained communities and provided them with a livelihood.
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