Welcome To Our Neighbourhood - Klong Toey, Bangkok
Klong Toey Slum Community is juxtaposed between the high-class social playground of upscale bars, restaurants, and shopping areas and the industrial Port Authority and Customs district. The sprawling mass of tin roofs are squeezed into 2 km², housing over 100,000 people and counting.
The community is a heady mix of vibrant beauty and also frenetic activity. Each "soi" (alleyway) is bursting with life as the very oldest in the community rubbing shoulders with the newest in this ever-growing urban village.
Klong Toey shares the same challenges as many other slum communities around the world. In the face of extreme poverty and often without any hope of this changing, people turn to drugs and alcohol to cope. Gang culture is rife and preys upon the most vulnerable, enticing boys from education and employment before they even reach their teenage years.
Unfortunately, the women in our community are also limited in their ability to make choices about their future just because they are a slum resident. Often they experience motherhood in their teens and find themselves the main provider for the extended family. Many feel prostitution or gang involvement is the best choice to make enough money to live.
And yet RoyRak loves Klong Toey slum because we believe that the future for each resident can be different from today. We believe this community is so much more than its vices; there is hope, there is beauty, and there is the promise of freedom for those in the alleys of Klong Toey.