Chiang Mai UK Honorary Consul Ben Svasti Thomson Named as Point of Light by British Prime Minister Teresa May

 | Thu 12 Jan 2017 03:27 ICT

CityNews – Chiang Mai’s UK Honorary Consul, Ben Svasti Thomson, has been awarded the Point of Light award by British Prime Minister Teresa May, in recognition of his outstanding individual charitable dedication to improving the lives of those in need in Northern Thailand.


Over the last six year, Thomson has been involved and created a range of volunteering and charitable organisations including  ‘Women Against AIDS’ to educate and empower women, ‘the Mother and Child Concern Foundation’ for families affected by HIV/AIDS, ‘Grassroots’ which supports former sex workers into alternative livelihoods and ‘the Anti-Trafficking Coordination Unit’ working with Thai government agencies and civil society groups to fight trafficking and support its victims. Read more about his earlier work in this Citylife article published back in 2012.

British Prime Minister Teresa May said “Your [Ben Svasti Thomson] voluntary work in Northern Thailand has improved the lives of countless people in need – from educating and empowering women in the fight against AIDS, to working with the Thai authorities to combat trafficking. As the UK Honorary Consul in Chiang Mai you are also supporting others to volunteer too.”

n2-meet the consulsThomson responded graciously by saying “Indeed I am most honoured to receive this award, although it is totally unexpected and had never been on my radar! Of course no one works alone and I must, in turn, thank all those who have provided their support in my charity networks and in the British Embassy Bangkok.”

Thomson began volunteering almost 40 years ago just after he finished university. “I have worked with refugees, abused women and children, people living with HIV/AIDS, victims of human trafficking and, most recently, British nationals in distress,” he said.

His Majesty’s Ambassador to Thailand also added that “Ben has made an enormous contribution to the local community in Northern Thailand. I am also immensely grateful for the work he does for this Embassy in supporting expats from the UK, both personally and through the networks he has created. But I am even more proud of his dedication to making a difference to the lives of ordinary people across Thailand – through the charities he has established and his collaboration with government and civil society. He is a shining example of the kind of partnerships that exist at all levels between the UK and Thailand.”

Thomson is the 655th winner of the Points of Light award which was developed in partnership with the successful Points of Light programme in the USA, established by President George H. W. Bush.