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Laos set to join the Asian Buddhist Network

13 July 2003:

Rice farming in Laos

JULY 2003: Laos is now the latest member-country in the Asian Buddhist network, ARC has announced. To initiate this the charity is sponsoring a Buddhist field officer to go on a field trip to Laos in summer 2003 to meet Buddhist monks and NGOs throughout the country.

The field officer’s brief is to find out and assess the level of grass-roots interest among Sangha members to become involved in conservation projects in their monasteries and in their local communities.

“We are hoping that we can offer seed funding to several monasteries, as well as share the information that Mlup Baitong has already collected from its environmental work in Cambodia,” said ARC’s project officer Joanne Robinson.

The Network is planning an environmental training workshop for Buddhist monks and nuns from all over Southeast Asia in Phnom Penh in March 2004. “And if there’s enough grass-roots interest we certainly would like to invite monks and nuns from Laos to join. We are also hoping that the monasteries can form partnerships with conservation NGOs for training, expert advice, information and networking,” Robinson said.

Laos is a mountainous country with a population of 5.6 million people. Most of the country is covered by tropical forest. Less than 5 percent of the land is suitable for agriculture, which still provides employment for 80 percent of the Laotian population.

External links (will open in a new page):

Mlup Baitong
BBC Laos Country Profile

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