Village Research in Nong Waeng Yao, Thailand
Section 5 - Findings
|Summary of the Research Findings
Local Knowledge and Skills
The community research recorded the following skills. The children in the village are skilled in pillow knitting, crocheting, farming, plowing, milling, driving, and making art with banana leaves. Women in the village are skilled in weaving cloth, making "khit" pillows, sericulture, mat weaving, wickerwork, crocheting, dressmaking, salon skills, making art with banana leafs, and food/dessert preparation. Many men in the village possess the following skills: masonry, carpentry, black-smithery, construction, tiling, plumbing, electric work, car motorcycles tillers and rice mills repair, PVC production, wickerwork, commerce, planting, animal husbandry, and making "dok jok" local dessert. Some men also have knowledge of herbal medicine and traditional rituals.
How is knowledge transferred in the community?
Knowledge is usually transferred through demonstration, practice, and 'on-the-job' training. Both men and women learn wickerwork skills from parents, relatives, or neighbors. Women normally develop their weaving skills by practicing with their mothers, grandmothers, relatives, and neighbors. The youth pick up skills from their teachers and friends. The men in the village usually learn their skills from experiences in factories or abroad. Arts of banana leaf, beauty dressing, and dressmaking are usually taught by teachers and relatives, but are sometimes enhanced through training by development agencies. Knowledge of herbal remedies is passed on by apprenticeship with experts in the field, but this is usually kept within families of the herbal specialists.
The children in the village identified their major family problems as lack of financial resources, minimal support for their education and drug addiction among youth and men in the community. The majority of the adult women and men reported that their families had economic problems, particularly: insufficient income, indebtedness, minimal funds for higher education of children, lack of occupational knowledge, unhealthy household members, and deteriorating houses. Many of the families are landless.
The main community issues that emerged during the research were scarcity of water, deforestation, and the need for better management of the garbage dump. The families who were interviewed also demanded more accountability on the part of the teachers, asking for more personal relationships between the teachers and the students.
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