The Khun Yuam - Mae Surin Refugee Camp fire


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
As many of you know there was a terrible fire in a refugee camp west of Khun Yuam.
36 people died on site in the camp fire.

There are many disturbing images on the net & on facebook.
I wont copy other peoples images & post them here.
But you can take a look here at some photo sites on FB.

1. Tui from Yont Guesthouse & store in Khun Yuam.

2. Karenni Further studies

3. Piyavit Thongs-ard
Piyavit was the first outside photographer on the scene arriving at first light from Chiang Mai after an all night drive, & is a professional freelance photographer of many years.

4. Mr Forever Eterntiy


6. Bangkok Post

There are many places to donate goods / money.
In Mae Hong Son at the Government Sala Klang offices & the Living Museum.

The Living Museum in Mae Hong Son



A MHS Nurse registering her donation at the MHS Living Museum




The official MHS government Sala Klang offices collection point


The official MHS Govt Bank account to donate money to


@ Krung Thai Bank

Nang at the Salween Restaurant in MHS was also collecting goods & money


In Khun Yuam the collection point is the Khun Yuam district office


Bottling drinking water at Khun Yuam


Want to help?
Donation suggestions from the Bangkok Post


I personally donated via Paypal to WEAVE as soon as I heard the emergency call.
Weave is an NGO that has been working with the refugees in MHS for years & has a very good reputation.

The organization was founded in 1990, with the intent to empower indigenous women and support their needs and basic human rights. The organization has evolved over the years, especially in the context of the influx of refugees from Burma.

In 1994, WEAVE developed partnerships with refugee women’s organizations. This led to changes in our mission to reflect the organization’s new thrust and direction.

WEAVE’s projects attempt to address some of the problems faced by marginalized ethnic women and their children from Burma in the key areas of education, health,economic empowerment and self reliance.

Our work is multi-sectoral and we continue to create and expand opportunities for women and their communities. While each program has its own focal area, WEAVE has started to become more integrated in our approach, recognizing the interrelatedness of our programs while at the same time trying to remain relevant. Capacity development and advocacy are integral parts of all WEAVE’s programs.

WEAVE’s target communities are displaced persons, particularly women, recognizing their role in providing for their families and in ensuring the well-being of their children. Our work has expanded to include the India-China-Burma border, but mainly concentrates along the Thai-Burma border.
You can donate to WEAVE via Paypal @ [email protected]

Another bigger overall consortium is The Border Consortium

TBC is a consortium of 10 international non-governmental organisations (NGOs) from eight countries.

TBC’s head office is in Bangkok with field offices in Mae Hong Son, Mae Sariang, Mae Sot, Umphang and Kanchanaburi.

TBC currently employs 95 staff (46 female/ 49 male, 19 international/ 76 national).

TBC is a registered charity in England and Wales.

History of TBC

TBC’s Executive Director was among the first people to witness, and respond to, the urgent needs of thousands of refugees from Burma who fled into Thailand in 1984.

Initial ad-hoc emergency support for the refugees, from a number of small aid agencies forming an informal consortium, gradually evolved into a multi-membership aid organisation with a mandate from the Royal Thai Government (RTG) to provide food, shelter and non-food items for all the refugees along the entire border. Today that body is called the TBC.
You can donate to TBC here

There is a mountain of material donations out there in Khun Yuam & my guess is that building new shelters / houses & a water supply is the first priority.
Then they have to sort out the material donations.
What do they need next - whom knows.
I saw score scores of private pick ups heading out to Khun Yuam to leave goods.
The generosity & compassion from the MHS people was fantastic.

I got the impression they're swamped with stuff right now & cant handle all the physical donations at the moment.
Cash donations to some of the NGOs to let them source what they need is the way to go right now I think.

My personal recommendation is WEAVE using Paypal.

[email protected]

Make your donation noting that it is to help the victims of the Karenni Refugee Camp fire.
If you want to mention from GT Rider, say the donation is from a friend of GT Rider, up to you.
This I believe is much easier than slowly collection money / goods from GTR , then handing it over. Let the NGO's work as quickly , efficiently as possible.

A couple of disturbing Bkk Post Reports to follow

this was the big rumour when I was in Khun Yuam & is a scary thought indeed, that is best not debated / commented on in a public domain.

You all take care now.

But if you've ever ridden the MHS Loop & enjoyed the people & perhaps even visited a refuge camp out there; spare some thoughts & a little money to help these victims on the terrible tragedy.
Please help them.


Dec 27, 2007
Bless you David for having the tact to not post graphic pictures of the victims of this terrible tragedy.

I've always been struck by how kind and welcoming the stateless Karen refugees are towards outsiders.

Thank you for letting us know how best we can help. It is heartwarming to see the outpouring of support, what the Thais call "Naam Jai".

I'd heard some disturbing rumors that Thai's didn't care about this tragedy because the victims are not Thai. I'm relieved to see that that is just a bunch of nonsense.


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
brake034;288832 wrote: Thanks David,

It was mentioned by sources at the camp that second hand clothes would be very welcome. But I do agree with you that money is needed more then everything.

My hopes are that in the longer term the eduction project in the camp can be re-established as a good eduction will allow the children to develop a better life in the future!
One of the organisations working on this is Child's Dream who finance the Karen Refugee Committee - Education Entity (KRCEE).

I am asking companies that I work with to sponsor reconstruction of the eduction project, hope to have some positive news about that real soon.
Indeed they will need clothes & many items.
There are bags of unlabelled clothes & items in MHS & KY waiting to be sorted, but my gut feeling was help with money & let the NGOs do their work systematically.


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
From today's Nation March 28

Funds to rebuild camp urgently needed
Wannapa Khaopa
The Nation March 28, 2013 1:00 am
The emergency aid that has been provided to survivors of the Ban Mae Surin refugee-camp fire in Mae Hong Son is enough for the time being as humanitarian agencies are stepping in to help at the recovery stage. They are also calling on Thai authorities to provide means for sustainable recovery.
Sally Thompson, executive director of The Border Consortium (TBC), said emergency goods, such as food and temporary shelter, were sufficient for now and what was needed most was funding to rebuild the ravaged camp in Khun Yuam district.

Thompson and colleagues from other non-governmental organisations working at the camp told a press conference yesterday that they were discussing the situation and looking for ways to help the refugees recover.

They said the Interior Ministry should create a recovery and rebuilding plan in collaboration with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and NGOs, along with the participation of refugees themselves. This way they can create safer housing and also teach them to live in a more sustainable manner.

Roisai Wongsuban, the advocacy coordinator of IRC, said relevant agencies should speak to the refugees and find out what they need so they can provide measures that will suit their needs. Also, the government should to provide the refugees more resources by giving them an opportunity to earn a living.
Monetary donations is the way to go folks; & every little donation will help for the long term.



Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
A message from WEAVE if you don't want to donate cash.

The women need more basic things like sarong, sanitary napkins, underwear, brassieres.
Babies need milk, baby clothes.
For food you can give noodles, canned goods like sardines.

Weave PayPal account - KTB Bank - WEAVE 508-1-39278-2

Another option is to give in cash and tell us what to buy and we can buy in MHS.
I hope this helps facilitate the relief & your kind donations.


Staff member
Jan 16, 2003
Chiang Khong
brake034;289081 wrote: An amount of 150.000 baht was transferred today to Suan Dok Hospital Foundation with strict instructions in English and Thai on the use for medical treatment of Chaa Nay Choo only.
Well done Marcel, let's hope the little guy pulls through.