Community Learning
Village Research in Nong Waeng Yao, Thailand
Section 6 - Action
  Community Action
The villagers' research prompted people to:
  • Encourage patients to see the traditional health care practitioner to treat illnesses such as kidney stones and diabetes.
  • Revive traditional rituals.
  • Promote the production of herbal drinks to replace costly and unhealthy modern soft drinks.
  • Create opportunities for children to learn from the elderly by working together.
Additionally, people from Nong Waeng Yao have observed:
  • Increased awareness of local issues and resources
  • More community participation in public matters
  • Greater financial transparency in the village
Using the Research for Development
The community members, both the researchers and those interviewed, were anxious to apply the research findings to the development of their community. Villagers organized a "Reforestation Day", with participation from children and adults from the community. The Forestry Department supported the activity by providing lunch for the participants and the village headman provided tractors to prepare the land for re-planting.
In a separate endeavor, a local micro-credit group for women used the research to request additional funding from the Subdistrict Government development bureau. Several development agencies responded to the community research by providing opportunities for skills development. These agencies responded favorably due to unique nature of the request for assistance.
It is, of course, common for poor villages to make requests to development agencies. But this time was different. This community presented their requests as part of a thorough inventory of existing knowledge and human resources. To the outside agencies, they presented not only their problems, but also the locally available resources that can be drawn upon in order to address those problems.
Expanding the Community Learning
Given the success of the Community Learning exercise in the village of Nong Waeng Yao, it was decided that more villages in Thailand should begin similar Community Learning initiatives. The village researchers from the original community have been instrumental in introducing the concept of Community Learning to community members in other villages in Thailand.
  • Ban Pitak - Suwannakhuha District
  • Ban Non Toon - Manjakhiri District
  • Ban Yankham Moo 1, 2, 13, 14 - Nongrue District
  • Ban Nafaitai - Phuphamarn District
1. Idea
2. Community
3. Research
4. Adapt
5. Findings
6. Action
7. After
8. Team
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