In 2014, ChildFund Laos supported the clearance of 48,267 m2 of farming land in Mai’s village thanks to the support of generous Australians who donated to our Clear Bombs Laos appeal, and the Australian Government. Sixteen cluster munitions – the main form of UXOs in Laos – were found and removed.
Now, families have access to more available farming land and no longer have to worry about the risk of unexploded bombs each day they work. Fourteen-year-old Khamson is relieved his parents’ land has been cleared of bombs.
“My parents started to work on this land before I was born. They plant rice, plums, peaches and chestnuts. I’ve seen two or three bombs there,” he says. “I feel happy that ChildFund supported our village to clear the bombs.”
Mai says: “I am not afraid anymore because the land has been cleared and is safe. I feel happy because we will harvest our produce without risks.”
ChildFund Australia would like to thank all those who donated to this appeal. Over $54,000 was raised to support families in rural northern Laos. More bomb clearance work will soon be undertaken with the rest of these funds.
UPDATE Nov 2015: The biggest bomb we’ve found so far in one of the villages where we work in Laos was uncovered this month – 1 metre deep in a corn field, only 100 metres from the main road. Another 15 smaller ‘bombies’ (cluster munitions) were also found and destroyed.