Support Bangkok Refugees: Eat Their Food, Buy Their Crafts (Postponed)

Photo: Chamaliin / Facebook

UPDATE: Citing security concerns, Chamaliin has postponed the event. Bernardo Miranda, a coordinator with the group, said a recently launched crackdown on people overstaying their visas has seen a surge of arrests – more than 100 people in recent weeks.

“We were not sure we could ensure the security of all the refugees at the event,” he said of the decision to cancel.

Thousands of refugees and asylum seekers make it to Thailand as a transit point while awaiting settlement in a third nation. The kingdom among nations that does not recognize the refugee status of asylum seekers and treats them as illegal migrants.

BANGKOK — Thousands of urban refugees and asylum seekers live in Bangkok, where they are not allowed to work and risk being detained and sent to languish in immigration detention centers at any time.


Meet some of them next week at a studio-arts venue in the On Nut area which will host an evening of music, food and crafts to support women refugees.

The Intercultural Bazaar will highlight international music performances and traditional cooking from five countries – Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Syria, Vietnam and Cambodia.

Check out and learn how to make traditional crafts including embroidery and cool henna designs inspired by refugees from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Somalia and Vietnam.

Local brand Chamaliin will host the workshops and show some of its handmade products made by members of the refugee community.

Asylum seekers from several nations will prepare dishes from their homelands for sale at low cost. Expect samosas, pakora and biryani rice from Pakistan alongside Syrian kebab, fatayer, hummus and ma’amoul (date biscuits).

Sri Lankan dishes will include savory nuts, watalappam (cardamom spiced coconut custard) and sweet Laddu balls. Vietnamese Bahn Mi sandwiches, spring rolls and loklak (Khmer beef stew) will also be served.

Admission is free. Food and craft sales go to the individuals involved in making them.

The event runs 5pm to 11pm on Nov. 25 at Brownstone Studio. The studio-gallery-cafe is located in Soi Sukhumvit 77 near Soi On Nut 25, which can be reached by motorbike or taxi from BTS On Nut.


Related stories:

Death of Pakistani Asylum-Seeker Prompts Call for End of Prison-Like Detention

Lives Interrupted for Asylum Seekers Facing Desperation, Detention in Thailand