Enote 79 – About Rinda

April 01, 2012

About Rinda:

Every once in a while a young man or woman comes along with such determination to succeed that you feel compelled to believe her. Rinda is one of these women. Rinda Ubonrat with Rindais a tall athletic girl who by virtue of her skill in volleyball was able to enter a very good high school in Kanchanaburi. There she became acquainted with the possibility of studying Chinese medicine. The six year course requires at least two years of Chinese language, the standard medical courses most taught in English, the rest in Thai and two years study in Shanghai. She has finished her third year and the class size has dropped from the original 90 students enrolled down to 46. Rinda grew up in Huay Malai, the location of the Kwai River Christian Hospital, and she hopes to be able to practice there or in a similar hospital. She is shown here with Ubonrat, a retired professor of Political Science at Chulalongkorn University, reviewing her academic record. We can only admire her achievement so far and wish her good success in the future.

A note on the recent elections:

Burma has been much in the news recently because of a by-election to parliament held just this Sunday.
Aung San Suu Kyi had been campaigning vigorously for some time and had not been feeling well. But in a TV clip that I saw recently she was well enough to quip that if the reporter asked her a difficult question she just might faint straight away. Prehaps the least surprising result in this time of many surprising results from Burma, is that she handily won her seat. She has said however that the election cannot be considered free and fair. "I don't think we can consider it a genuinely free and fair election if we take into consideration what has been going on in the last couple of months, but still as we wish to work towards national reconciliation we will try to tolerate what has happened and we hope the courage and resolution of the people will overcome the intimidations and other irregularities that have been taking place." We are delighted with every step toward peace in a free and democratic Burma, but we also know that it will take a long time.

Big Board Meeting Coming Up:

Every year BREF holds two meetings of its Board of Trustees, the first Saturday in April, and the first Saturday in October. The April meeting is mainly concerned with a review of the past year's activities and approval of a budget for the coming year. The October meeting usually deals with other issues like Term Limits for Board Members, Cultural Sensitivity for TReps, Changing Political Environment for Refugees etc. This year, after 3 successive 5-year terms, I have announced my retirement from the Board of Trustees effective this October. This will be a small but important difference. I will continue my work as director of BREF, and will attend meetings of the Board to discuss and advise, but not to vote. The big chore that leaves us, is defining the role of Chair of the Board, and finding a person to fill it. I hope by bringing in new leadership to BREF, the ultimate transition will be made easier. I have been very happy to serve these past 15 years, but I do recognize the need for new leadership. Needless to say we will be very busy this Saturday. Wish us luck.


  • Writing reports and new proposals for grants.
  • Preparing an agenda for the upcoming Trustees meeting.
  • Preparing a budget for next year.
  • Starting payments for leader-interns in India.
  • Finishing details of our cooperation with Children on the Edge in Bangladesh.

Thank you and Best Wishes for a wonderrful Spring and Summer,

Your day is not finished until you've done someone a favor.