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Webster Human Rights Students Travel to Bang Saphan

Webster Thailand - Jungle AidLocated a little more than three hours from Webster’s Hua Hin / Cha Am campus, the village of Bang Saphan feels like a world away. Home to about 120 residents in total, the village is comprised of little more than a few dozen houses grouped in several distinct clusters. Despite its picturesque location on the coast of Thailand, the village’s inhabitants are considered particularly vulnerable in terms of healthcare, education and sustainable living.

Webster Thailand - Jungle AidAs part of an on-going commitment to support this community, students from Webster Thailand’s Introduction to Human Rights course (HRTS 1100) travelled to Bang Saphan in early July 2017. Accompanied by visiting Adjunct Professor Kelly McBride, the students were able to garner some ‘first-hand’ field experience, whilst also assisting a marginalized community via a number of different means.

Departing Hua Hin bright and early at 7am on a Saturday morning, the students were also joined by a licenced osteopath and nurse to assist with the day’s activities. Throughout the day student volunteers provided the village with a medical clinic, osteopath training for two local nurses, and a range of health promotion activities. Particularly focussed on young children, the health promotion activities addressed the key issues of mosquito prevention, hand washing and oral hygiene. The students also delivered a number of donations including clothing, personal hygiene items, mosquito nets, and over 500kg of rice. Financial support was also provided to village residents for housing, education and daily living.

The trip to Bang Saphan also provided an opportune moment for a dialogue between Webster Thailand representatives and the village contacts. As physical visits can only be made on a periodic basis, the day was utilized to engage in open and frank discussions about how to improve existing communication channels with the village contacts. A village assessment to determine future needs and opportunities was also conducted. As an institution that values ‘hands on’ learning, the visit to Bang Saphan proved to be an inspiring, productive and worthwhile visit for all involved. 

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