Thai ladies cook food for Australian firefighters


Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Images adapted from: Pantip

Australia is now facing another disastrous season of wildfires, which spread across the country, due to the dry climate and extreme heatwave. But sometimes, moments like this bring people together.

A group of Thai women in New South Wales came together and did what they could for their local firefighters by cooking delicious Thai food for them during this tough time.

A week ago, Ms. Meaw Nuananong Puangkamkong, posted on Pantip to share this heartwarming experience with her fellow Thai people, which left many inspired inspiring.


The bushfires in Australia


Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

The dots symbolise heat spots all over Australia – the darker, the hotter. We can see by the photo that the east of New South Wales and Queensland are in serious trouble.
Image credit: Australian Government

Before we get into Ms. Meaw’s wholesome story, let’s get a brief idea about what’s been going on in Australia.

Wildfires, also known as bushfires, are the result of extremely dry weather, high temperature, and strong wind. And although bushfires are not new to the country, this year’s fires started early and have been more aggressive. 

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Image credit: The Guardian

In the state of New South Wales alone, more than 1.65 million hectares of land have been burned by more than 60 fires – the damaged area’s number is already higher than the state’s total in the last 3 years combined.

So far, the fires have claimed 6 lives and more than 400 structures.


Reach out to help


Since her house is located in the area and she could see the fires from her balcony, Ms. Meaw kept herself updated through local information groups on Facebook, in which CWA (Country Women’s Association) Nimbin Branch was one of them. CWA is an organisation that aims to provide support to women and children all over the country. 

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Ms. Meaw (second from left) and all the kind ladies with the president of CWA (in black)
Image credit: Pantip

In this group, Ms. Meaw saw an announcement that asked people to donate food like bread, juice, and cooked meat for the firefighters who were protecting the community from danger.

She then decided to reach out to Country Women’s Association and volunteered to cook dinner for all the 168 local firefighters that were doing their part to deal with the fires. 


Cooked 168 meals, including vegan and gluten-free options


Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Ms. Meaw and friends shopped for the ingredients
Images adapted from: Pantip

Ms. Meaw then called up all her Thai colleagues and friends who lived nearby to join her charitable cause. They gladly accepted her invitation.

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Image credit: Pantip

With rice as a base, they cooked a variety of delicious Thai dishes including green curry with chicken and local vegetables, massaman curry with beef and sweet potatoes, larb chicken with hard-boiled eggs, and fried rice with chicken. 

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Massaman curry with beef and sweet potatoes
Image credit: Pantip

For firefighters who were vegans, Ms. Meaw prepared vegan fried rice with tofu and tofu on sticks with satay peanut gravy.

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Vegan fried rice with tofu
Image credit: Pantip

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Tofu Satay
Image credit: Pantip

She then completed this special meal with mango and sweet sticky rice as a dessert sprinkled with black sesame yummm.

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Image credit: Pantip


Volunteers helped pack the food


Once everything was cooked, the food was carefully packed and stored in foam containers to keep them warm for the firefighters. 

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

Image credit: Pantip

A local firefighter was sent to pick up and deliver the food. He was in glee once he found out that the food he was picking up was homemade Thai cuisine – you can see how happy he was from his wide smile!

Thai Volunteers Cook Meals For Firefighters During Australian Bushfires, Felt It Was Their Duty To Help

White smoke from the fires obscure the sky behind him
Image credit: Pantip


She felt it was her duty to help


During an interview with SBS Thai, Ms. Meaw revealed that she and her friends believed that it was their “obligation” to help and support these brave firefighters in a difficult time like this.

Thanks to all the sweet ladies for spreading kindness to the world, and to all the firefighters for looking out for the townspeople’s’ safety. Most importantly, we hope everybody stays safe during this time until Australia’s skies are clear again. 


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