Lena Bumiller

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So far Lena Bumiller has created 10 blog entries.

Moken Village Update – One Month After

The first houses are finished. A team of soldiers has been staying in the bay with the Moken, and together they have been working hard every day in the burning sun. The National Park has kindly been providing three hot meals a day for over a month now. At the moment there is a construction pause, as people wait for more material to be delivered. The village is a massive construction site with 60 skeletons that will soon be [...]

2019-03-27T09:52:07+00:00March 6th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Moken Village Fire Update Day 16 – The struggle over land

The use of land is the center of the ongoing struggle between the Moken people on Surin and the National Park. While Moken have an unwritten right by ancestry, the National Park claims with all written laws to protect the environment from people. After the 2004 Tsunami when the Moken were "asked" to merge their previous two villages into one single bay another big change occurred: the Moken were moved up on the beach. Prior to the tsunami, they built houses on stilts along the [...]

2019-03-27T09:49:53+00:00February 23rd, 2019|News|1 Comment

Moken Village Fire Update Day 12

Hook rushed to Bangkok on Monday to attend a meeting with the Department of National Parks, Wildlife, and Plants (DNP). The topic of the meeting was actually the issues facing an indigenous people living within a National Park in the Northern Thailand. However, as all many high level officials were present, it was the right space for Hook to let the voice of his people be heard. The DNP officials received Hook with an open mind and listened to his concern that the new village [...]

2019-03-27T09:49:00+00:00February 18th, 2019|News|0 Comments

It’s time to listen to needs of Moken sea gypsies

According to an article in the Bangkok Post the fire that destroyed the Moken sea gypsies' village on Surin should be an opportunity to re-evaluate the needs of the Moken people. "While the state deserves praises for swiftly acting to rebuild the Moken community in Ao Bon Yai on the Surin Islands that was devastated by a recent fire, the government should try to move beyond "conventional" charity affairs and focus on the dignity, the quality of lives, and the actual needs of indigenous communities." [...]

2019-03-27T09:48:10+00:00February 16th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Moken Tribe of Seafaring People Ask to Expand Their Village

Moken Tribe of Seafaring People Ask to Expand Their Village, As Previous Structures Were Too Congested. Committee Member Agrees, Citing Their Ancestral Rights to the Land On 07 February, General Surin Pikulthong, in his role as a member of the Committee for the Affairs of Indigenous Peoples, held a press conference regarding restoration of the Moken village on Surin Island in Phang Nga province after a fire burned 60 homes, nearly consuming the entire village.  The provincial government and national park are rushing to construct [...]

2019-03-27T09:47:06+00:00February 16th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Community Members Call for Patience Amid Rush to Rebuild Moken Village on Koh Surin,

Community Members Call for Patience Amid Rush to Rebuild Moken Village on Koh Surin, Noting Densely Packed Homes Exacerbated Fire Conditions. New Proposal Seeks to Widen Layout to Ensure Future Safety for Villagers 11 February - Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.  The Network of Andaman Seafaring Ethnic People, represented by Mr. Wittawat Thepsong, submitted a proposal to Mr. Wicharn Simachaya, Secretary of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, who acts as Chairman of the Committee for the Affairs of Indigenous Peoples (the literal [...]

2019-03-27T09:44:57+00:00February 15th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Moken village fire update day 7

If there wasn't this empty burned space in the middle of the Big Bon Bay, the set up tents would look like a cozy gathering. Shaded spaces are limited and so the tents accumulate under the available trees towards the right side of the bay. People line up in the hot sun to bath their children. There is currently only one water hose 200 meters off the main tent area. Food is delivered by the national park three times a day, yet many families prefer [...]

2019-03-27T09:39:55+00:00February 14th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Koh Surin Fire Disaster update Day 3

There has been an impressive national response to immediate fire disaster relief. Many different parties organized to help to the Moken people on Surin, who lost all their possessions after the fire and were left with only the clothing they wore that evening on February 3rd. The Thai Navy as well as the Mu Koh Surin National Park, who are both based around the Surin Islands provided for immediate needs and have been serving meals to the Moken since. The district and provincial government officials went [...]

2019-03-27T09:38:35+00:00February 9th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Fire at the Moken village on Surin

This time it was not a tsunami but a fire, which took everything the Moken owned. No one was injured, but the village burned completely to the ground. “It is worse than after the Tsunami”, said Moken Suriyan Klathale, “because after the Tsunami one could at least search for missing things” Sunday evening, the 3rd of February, the sun has set. Children play in the sand between the houses, while inside the cole-stove is lit as dinner is being prepared. The houses are built on [...]

2019-03-27T09:26:53+00:00February 4th, 2019|News|0 Comments

Moken in Paradise? Reflections on Koh Surin

I was invited by my daughter Lena to the Surin Islands, which is where I met the Moken in their village. They live in simple housing and use their biosphere (the forest and the sea) in a way that is profoundly informing for visitors who think that sustainability is an invention of the western world. When listening to the stories of the Moken, how they lived before the administration of the National Park, emotions of helplessness and despair mix with feelings of compassion and solidarity. Their [...]

2017-04-26T16:48:58+00:00May 30th, 2014|Moken People, Surin Islands|0 Comments