During the recent visit of the Thailand ChildSafe team to our HQ in Cambodia we spent a little time having a brief chat with one of our Child Protection Team #everydayheroes, Ms Pradthana Suwanpiam, who is better known to us and others by her nickname, Pad.
When did you join Friends Thailand and what is your role there?
‘I’ve been with Friends since 2015. I’m in the Thailand Child Protection team, and I’m the Child Protection Project Officer. Basically I coordinate and help deliver child protection policy training, particularly in the Government Shelters where Peuan Peuan, the Friends Thailand program, works. So that’s not just in Bangkok, but also right across the north and east of the country.’
Could you tell us a bit more about this work?
‘Of course. It actually has quite a bit of variety! The shelters house many children and youth, detained for reasons including illegal entry, who will in many cases be returned to their country of origin, and we are training staff and administration on child protection in the shelters, reinforcing good practice to ensure the children and youth are being looked after in a protective, ChildSafe environment. Some shelters, these are very young children, from babies up to six year olds. In others its seven year olds up to the age of 24. There are shelters for boys, and for girls and also specialized shelters for children who have disabilities.’
What inspires you in your work?
‘I am very, very enthusiastic about child protection! You know, I really love the feeling that I am transferring my skills and enthusiasm for that during the training sessions we hold. I really want to transfer to the shelter staff not only the right skills and knowledge but also share some of my energy so they too are committed to child protection. Positive energy to protect children, that’s really inspiring!’