All posts filed under: Education and Development

2019 Lao New Year festivities across America

Photo by Snap Pilots Sok di pi mai! One of the best times of the year is upon us. From gathering with friends and family to receiving blessings at the wat, let’s ring in the new year with good spirits. Below is a collection of Lao New Year events and festivities we could find — with some hopefully near you. It is by no means a complete list so if we missed any, please share! Arizona April 13-14 (10 a.m.-5 p.m.) Wat Lao Thammaram 9501 N. 16th Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85021 Arkansas April 27-29 Wat Lao Santitham 4625 Armour St., Fort Smith, AR 72904 May 3-5 Wat Lao Buddharam 3317 N 23rd St., Fort Smith, AR 72904 California April 6 (6 p.m. – 1 a.m.) LNY celebration at La Sierra Community Center 5325 Engle Rd., Carmichael, CA 95608 April 6 (7 p.m.-midnight) –  April 7 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.) California Center for the Arts, Escondido 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido, CA 92025 April 13 (10 a.m.-5 p.m.) Downtown Merced April 13 (8 a.m. – 5 p.m.) …

UN expert: Laos’ approach ‘destroyed livelihoods, entrenched vulnerability’

Laos’ economic and poverty alleviation approach is counterproductive to its impoverished population’s health and puts their rights at risk, according to a scathing preliminary report by United Nations Special Rapporteur Philip Alston, which was recorded live for the first time. Alston delivered the report at the UN House in Vientiane Thursday after investigating the human rights of people in poverty in Lao People’s Democratic Republic. The report includes the status of rural children, women and ethnic minorities, environmental issues and climate change, the role of foreign investment and infrastructure projects, access to social support, education and healthcare, and more. Alston acknowledged the government’s progress in reducing poverty, such as lowering the number of those living below the poverty line in half, but said its methods to grow the economy have “destroyed livelihoods, entrenched vulnerability, and actually made some people poorer by taking away their access to lands, livelihoods, and resources.” Almost 1/4 of the population lives in poverty and an estimated 80 percent lives at risk of poverty, according to the report. The UN expert …