Elderly mother and son get B6m donations

Elderly mother and son get B6m donations

Noi Aiamsaart (right), 81, and her son Chamnian, 62, residents of Kamphaeng Phet, have lunch while waiting to register for the Rao Chana programme, which gives 7,000 baht each to eligible people to help cope with Covid-19 hardships in front of Krungthai Bank’s Tha Makua branch in Kamphaeng Phet province on Tuesday. (Photo from 
P'fon Kamonthip Facebook)
Noi Aiamsaart (right), 81, and her son Chamnian, 62, residents of Kamphaeng Phet, have lunch while waiting to register for the Rao Chana programme, which gives 7,000 baht each to eligible people to help cope with Covid-19 hardships in front of Krungthai Bank’s Tha Makua branch in Kamphaeng Phet province on Tuesday. (Photo from P'fon Kamonthip Facebook)

An elderly mother and her son have received almost 6 million baht in donations from the public after a video clip showing them sharing a modest lunch while waiting to register for Covid-19 aid went viral.

A Facebook user by the name of P'fon Kamonthip on Wednesday posted the video showing the pair sharing sticky rice while waiting.

“Because we can’t choose…I feel for the elderly couple. They left home at midnight and arrived at the bank at 4am with no money, hoping to get 7,000 [baht],” she wrote.

The post was shared several thousand times and people asked how to contact them so they could help. The poster, who also lived in the same province according to her Facebook profile, later posted a copy of the son’s ID and bank book.

Donations had since poured in until authorities reportedly closed the account after the fund swelled to almost 6 million baht.  

Thai media later reported that Noi Aiamsaart, 81, and her son Chamnian, 62, went to Krungthai Bank’s Tha Makua branch in Kamphaeng Phet province on Tuesday to register for the Rao Chana programme, which gives 7,000 baht each to eligible people to help cope with the hardships in the wake of the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.

They reportedly left home at 4am on a 35km ride with no money in the hope of getting the aid.

Mr Chamnian told Khaosod Online they had come to the bank for two days but could not register because the queues were full. On the third day, they decided to start early and became the first to register. 

District chief Sadudee Phuttung told Thairath Online he would set up a panel comprising their relatives to manage the fund so the mother and son benefit the most from it. 

Lek Boonthat, 62, Mr Chamnian’s sister, said she had been taking care of the pair by bringing them food and drinks. “As shown in news reports, they are really struggling. We’d like to thank all agencies and donors who helped us. The amount should be enough for them.”

The government on Monday opened an additional round of registration for 7,000-baht aid under the Rao Chana programme for people who could not register through smartphones. Long queues were reported nationwide since most branches could cope with a little over a hundred people each day.  

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