My First Refugee Camp
"Korang Yai Island - My First Home in Thailand"
We lived on this remote and desolate island for some reasons.
I just found out now that it is the one of the more uninhabitable islands in this region. I guess the UNHCR made it our home for the Vietnamese refugees was more appropriate.
We were given tents and large blue plastic sheets to build our own living spaces.
There is a landmark there built by the refugees. The thai military group ordered us to build a wooden grand entrance sign. It was made by a big plank of wood with deep engraving full of Thai words that I don't recognize...probably it must have said "Welcome to Ko Rang Yai Camp" or something of sort. This big thick banner of red wood was erected right in the center of the stretch of sand that we lived on.
Another landmark was a pier stretching out to the water from the beach. This peir was made entirely of rocks by the refugees. The whole camp came out and gathered all the rocks on the beach and piled them up to form the rocky pier.
I beleive this pier would still be present since it would be pretty tough to destroy it.
Of course, it is one of my dying wish is to visit this remote island once again.
"Ko Kut Island - My First Step to Freedom"
This island is where I and a group (22) of Vietnamese refugees first landed on non-comunist land.
The tiny boat we rode on crashed upon arrival due to heavy wave and hard rocks on the shore.
We walked around and found a local's home where we lived under the coconut trees for a few weeks...until they notified the UNHCR and they came with a big boat to pick us all up later. In all after a few weeks, the refugees accumulated to about 80 people.