Thailand has been a constitutional monarchy, with a prime minister as the head of government, since 1932. Yet, since 2005, the country has experienced several rounds of political turmoil and coups. Politics is characterized by competition among old and new elites, bureaucrats and generals. Thailand has serious political and social challenges that need addressing, notably poverty and inequality.
Past economic development and industrialization in Thailand has transformed its economic structure and social networks resulting in significant positive and negative impacts on rural livelihoods. At the same time, the gap between rural and urban populations is widening, with public expenditures, particularly for education, skewed towards urban areas.
Oxfam in Thailand has been working with partners at the local and national level to build an enabling environment for sustainable agricultural production of food and income security (including land reform, forest and coastal resources management and climate change adaptation) since 2001.
In the past, Oxfam focused its programs on predominant issues such as peace building in the south, land access rights in the north and community-based natural resource management in the north and coastal areas of the South of Thailand. The issue-focused approach was necessary to build a network of civil society organizations and private sector.
We are expanding our coverage from national to regional and international levels, to engage on national policies that are supported by programmatic accomplishments through collaboration with strategic partners and the private sector. We are broadening our stakeholder base to include other social sectors as well.
For the long-term, we strive toward a vision of women and men living in a society that is free from inequality and poverty.
Our Goal is an empowered, promoted and supported civic network of rural producers, the urban middle class, women leaders and community leaders and members operating under the principles of equal rights to actively and innovatively influence consumer behaviors, improve community economics, facilitate sustainable development and promote peace.
We are working in collaboration with our strategic partners to empower marginalized women and men to end poverty and to engage for a more equal and sustainable Thai society that promotes positive rural-urban linkages by enabling equitable sharing of natural resources, scaling up of sustainable food systems and advancing gender justice.
Our work includes:
- The development of model communities to provide evidence and impetus for scaling up.
- Strengthen community organizations and networks to scale up and increase local influencing.
- Support for national level influencing by community organizations and networks aimed at government and public agencies as well as limited private sector engagement.
- Oxfam research and investigations by national level research institutions to support policy and legislative advocacy.