April 2014 Newsletter – 10th Anniversary Celebration

Posted: Apr 1, 2014


 

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Our Calendar

SAVE-THE-DATE

July 15, 2014

 

Legacies of War

10th Anniversary Celebration and Benefit

 

Washington, DC

 

(more info soon)

________________

 

The year 2014 includes important milestones:

 

10th anniversary of the founding of Legacies of War (2004)

 

20th anniversary of formal agreement to begin UXO clearance work in Laos (1994)

 

50th anniversary of the beginning of U.S. bombing in Laos (1964)

Support Us and

Our Mission!

Lao New Year is a time for renewal. Join us in renewing our commitment to making Lao land safe by sending in a gift of your support.

 

Every dollar you give will ensure that we get a step closer to solving this problem. Together, we can do it!

 

Make a New Year’s donation and dedicate your gift by honoring a family, friend, or survivors.

 

 

Thank You to Our Recent Donors!

Malisamai Vue

Michael Burton

Geoffrey Hutchinson

Judith Hiniker

Global Teas: Teas to Change the World

 

Help us to achieve our ambitious 2014 goals & consider supporting Legacies of War.

Thank you /
Kop chai / Ua koj tsaug

 

 

 

Related News

& Events

 

International Mine Awareness Day observed every April 4th, calls for assistance in promoting mine-action capacities where mines and explosives continue to pose a serious threat to civilians. This year, the UN commemorates and promotes the work of women in mine action as a crucial part of the initiative.

 

MAG America Photography Exhibit in Washington, DC from April 1-4:

Surviving the Peace: Landmines, Mortars, and Munitions. The free-admission exhibit features work by Sean Sutton, who is an award-winning photojournalist.

 

Astonishing video of the bombing missions over Laos (in Mother Jones) This shows the massive magnitude of the bombings in Laos.

 

Senator Leahy Urges the US to sign the Mine Ban Treaty

Senator Patrick Leahy, who is the chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee which funds UXO clearance programs around the world, gave an impassioned speech on the Senate floor last week.

 

 

Mother, children severely injured

in UXO accident

 

In the past, many UXO accidents occurred because of scrap metal collection, where villagers “harvested” metal parts from leftover bombs to sell as a way to earn income, but this has been on the decline in recent years. However, we are sad to report that incidents from this trade still occur, as poor villagers seek ways to support their family’s income. We received a report of an accident in March involving a farmer and her two boys, who found the bombs and sought to sell them.

 

 

 

On March 2, 2014 in Pak District, Xieng Khoang, Mrs. Bouakham, 39, and her two sons, Tod, 18, and Techno, 16, students in high school, were involved in a serious accident. They had found a bombie, along with other materials, and took it to sell to a scrap metal buyer. The buyer picked up the metal to clean and remove dirt and moss by hitting it with another piece of metal several times, causing the bomb to explode. The buyer died immediately. Mrs. Bouakham, who was closest to the explosion, had her right leg blown off, and eventually amputated. Techno, who was standing by his mother, was injured in the face, including both his eyes, and has many wounds from shrapnel in both his legs. Her son,Tod, was injured on his right ear and cheek, as well as his right shoulder. Her youngest daughter, was not injured.

 

 

 

All three accident victims were initially treated at the Provincial Hospital. The Quality of Life Association (QLA) team visited them when they were in the provincial hospital and will continue to follow up on their medical progress and to discuss the type of support that QLA and World Education could provide for UXO survivors. Some of their costs will be covered through the War Victims Fund, provided by various donors, including the U.S.

 

(Photos used with permission of the survivors. Thank you to World Education for providing details of the accident.)

 

 

Lao New Year Brings Renewal

 

Souksan Van Pii mai! Happy New Year!

 

 

Lao New Year, Pii Mai (pronounced Pii-My) or Kut Songkaan, falls on April 13th through April 15th this year. The three-day ritual is the most widely celebrated festival in Laos and coincides with the end of the dry season and the start of the monsoon season. The festival is also widely celebrated by the Lao diaspora in the United States, Canada, Australia and many countries in Europe. Laos’ neighboring countries, including Thailand, Burma, and Cambodia also celebrate new year during this time.

 

The first day of Lao New Year, also known as the last day of the old year, is when everyone cleans their homes in preparation for a fresh start to the New Year. The second day is considered the interim day and a day of rest.  The third day is the start of the New Year and symbolizes rebirth and purification. On this day, people gather at local temples to make offerings and gain merit.

 

Don’t forget to wish everyone a happy New Year and renew your comittment to a safer Laos by helping Legacies of War through your financial contribution. Please donate and join us this year in advocating for continued U.S. funding to Laos so more land can be cleared, lives can be saved and the people of Laos will have a more peaceful future.


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