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Matthew McDaniel akha at
Sun Sep 19 06:30:54 UTC 1999

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	 Date: Sun, 19 Sep 1999 13:30:54 +0700
	 From: Matthew McDaniel <akha at>
	 Organization: The Akha Heritage Foundation
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		  Subject: ELL: 18 Sept 99
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	 18 Sept 99
	 Dear Friends:

	 We are close to having a trailer completed that will allow us to mix
	 concrete for the displaced villages that need new clean wells built.

	 I got a call the other evening from an Akha man who told me that the
	 baby girl of two months of his sister in law was close to dying of
	 fever.  I was quite sick myself and quite some distance away so I
	 him I would begin dragging myself in that direction.  He called
	 They were leaving for a close hospital.  They called again, I was

	 ten minutes of that hospital but they were leaving for another one
	 further south in Chiangrai.  By the time I got to the first one they
	 were gone and since I didn. have any more money for gas I had to turn
	 back to home.  Oh well.  I climbed into bed.  It greatly disturbed
	 I slept heavy all night and thought about the fact that this girl.
	 first baby had already died.  I was woken with a phone call.  Baby

	 could you come and take us to see it.  I stirred. They had money for
	 gas.  I got there to the village, picked them up, gassed up and
	 down to Chiangrai.  In Chiangrai we wandered all over the complex

	 finding the mother in a crowded government hospital ward on the
	 floor, glass, partitions, walls, toys, beds, no where as usual for
	 parents to sleep, alienation in the ultimate, and then a tiny glass
	 room.  No wind, no air, heat.  Would kill anyone, let alone a sick
	 baby.  The mother was there.  I felt really bad for her.  Her first

died waiting for the doctor in the waiting room.  Hey, thats normal for
Akha.  You aren. there.  Well I wasn. there either.  The nurses
couldn. even recognize me and so the mother pointed through the glass
where the dead baby was.  I could see it, a tube sticking out of its
mouth, yellow. No life, no blood.  I waited. Nurses said nothing.  The
mother said she didn. know nothing because they didn. tell her
anything.  I could finally see nurses in the room so I just opened the
door and said, hey, do you mind if I take this dead baby home and bury
it proper, you done here?  Then I went over to the bed where they had it

still being plugged into the respirator, and I looked down at it, and
called the mother, quite sad I was, hey is this your baby, is this the
one? Yes.  And then the baby moved.  What is going on here?  I looked at

the nurse.  Oh the doctor must come first, No, you get this baby ready
and we are moving it to the other hospital.  But why can. it just die
right here? I mean, we got this down with Akha babies.  I had to go to
the other hospital, get to the surgeon from ICU, get him to approve and
send an ambulance and a nurse from ICU and when they got there and the
ICU nurse from the other hospital was already pumping blood and water
out of this .ead babie..lungs in the elevator going down and I felt
so bad for all the babies still up there.  Within six hours the ICU
doctor said the baby would live and two days from now the baby will be
out of the general ward.

Well now it comes out.  The baby was ill due to the mother eating white
rice, heart problem from birth, only two months old and the baby hadn.
eaten any white rice, so what does that say about forced relocation of
Akha villagers from mountain rice to flat lands where they are forced to

eat flat land white rice which they do not do by choice?  And then their

babies are born with heart problems?  Nation state mentalities is a
tyranny conceived in the west and fostered in the west and it leaves no
room for the indigenous.

Well that is going to cost $700 close to.  Babies, keeping them alive,
just one baby in a situation like this, can be a whole lot more than I
might have to spend here for a full month.  Many people assume that this

is the amazing funded project.  It is not.  We have not one $1 of income

that comes in by arrangement month by month.  So when I go to a village
and pull a baby to the ICU to keep it alive, I haven. a clue to where
that money will come from.  Then I must go begging and when the baby
gets discharged I have to do things like hock this computer to get the
cash to pay the hospital so the baby can come out and the bill doesn.
go up more.

What I like is the emails when people write and say gee, how do you do
that over there, gee, what can I do to help.


Well, an Englishman got himself locked up in Burma to protest that
government so it has made things on the burma side more difficult.

I am working on doing a village run by, the number of Akha villages in
Thailand, and a visit to each and getting the worst med cases listed,
wells needed, and so forth.

I am also working on finding deep pockets for a large truck to haul tree

sapplings out to the Akha villages, rock and cement for wells, that sort

of thing.  Any one interested in that?


By the way, one day we will have to get all the children together saved
at the ICU and stand them up for a group photo.  None have died.

Well, in the seeds contest the squash, hard skinned squash did the best,

that and corn.  Boy the Akha can grow some wopper corn.  Any one out
there have a recipe for corn grits.  Hey I have corn and water, hope it
doesn. take anything fancy, and I got a grinder.

Anyone ever eaten salty soy paste cake.  Yeah, the Akha make a salty soy

bean cake that is heavy and pasty and they cook it in a banana leaf and
it can be dipped in sauce or whatever.  Really good.
Funny how all the chickens disappear at dinner time.
Three sizes of clothes I am having designed of Akha cloth.  Three sizes
of boys and three sizes of girls.  That way the Akha children will have
good clothes.  Donors buy the traditional cloth.  Akha women sew it for
which I pay them and we distribute in Akha villages.  Yeah, I know, some

Thais ask me if they might be just enough Akha to qualify.  Anyway, I
should have the three sizes done soon. this will be an improvement over
all the cheap clothes that really are unsustainable and fall apart and
are a rip off by the shops and manufacturers alike.
New shocks on the truck, hope this fixes my back.

I answer all email, so I would ask that more people write in and find
out what this is all about and how you can help, won. be boring, can
guarantee that.
On the language work, I am getting close to getting a printing building
and setting up.  Going to be a busy year end if I make 101 Books in Akha

by the end of the year isn. it?



Matthew McDaniel
The Akha Heritage Foundation
386/3 Sailom Joi Rd
Maesai, Chiangrai, 57130
Mobile Phone Number:  Sometimes hard to reach while in Mountains.

US Address:

Donations by check or money order may be sent to:

The Akha Heritage Foundation
PO BOX 6073
Salem OR 97304

Donations by direct banking can be transferred to:

Wells Fargo Bank
Akha Heritage Foundation
Acc. # 0081-889693
Keizer Branch # 1842  04
4990 N. River Road.
Keizer, Oregon,  97303 USA
ABA # 121000248

Or In Thailand:

Matthew  Duncan McDaniel
Acc. # 3980240778
Bangkok Bank Ltd.
Maesai Branch

Web Site:
mailto:akha at

Discussion Groups:
akha at
indigenousworld at

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