Today, GROUND will take you to a Muslim community in southern Thailand where many of our groups take part in activities to learn about the local way of life. Baan Bang Rong is located in Pa Klok sub-district, Phuket Province. Baan Bang Rong Community is involved in managing community-based tourism in nine villages of Pa Klok sub-district where villagers make a living out of natural resources and local culture. They engage in artisanal fisheries and farming and host visitors for activities connected to the environment and culture.
We will start the day by getting to know more about the community; the harmony from locals is the key to forming such a healthy community and building relationships with the locals. Fisheries and farming is the primary income for older generations in this community. Still, tourism can help the younger generations in the community to realize the importance of keeping the older traditions and careers alive, particularly when they are able to share it with visitors.
Visiting a pineapple farm is an activity that shows farming life and culture. In the hot and humid weather, you will enjoy a cold fresh pineapple from the farm and will learn how to pick pineapples yourself, with some guidance from your host. Then we will make the dessert from pineapple, which is the way to preserve it.
The Bank Crab project is a new initiative for the environment at the community. It aims to conserve the female crab with eggs from being eaten by humans. The blue crab is an animal in the local ecosystem. Local fishers have been fishing and selling them to the market to generate an income for their households. Unfortunately due to the lack of knowledge about conservation, the blue crab population is reducing every year due to the fishing of female crabs who are carrying eggs. Now, the “Bank crab” project will help develop a nursery for female crabs with eggs that were in the fishing nets. The crabs will stay in the nursery until the eggs hatch then they will be released back into the river. The project is an attempt to balance the ecosystem in the river. If we are lucky during this activity we will get to release those crabs and learn more about the ecosystem along the way.
Mangroves Forests are also vital for the ecosystem, and it is the place of animal habitats such as mudskippers, oysters, shrimps, crabs, and diverse species of birds etc. Surrounding the Baan Bang Rong community, there are a lot of mangroves forest areas. Another activity that helps make a significant impact on the environment in the long term is reforesting the mangroves. Our host will provide the mangrove sprouts for each participant, and we will plant it together in the forest area. The mangroves planting activity will be done at a particular time and will be different each day, depending on the level of water, and the muddy surface is the best one to plant mangroves.
Ultimately, the mangrove forests are extremely productive ecosystems, providing critical services that benefit all of us.
GROUND Asia partners with communities across Asia to assist in their sustainable development. The communities we work with are our clients. To meet their expectations, we empower them through mutually beneficial programs to ensure their development needs come first.