College Of Idaho Team Will Document Refugees Caught Between Conflicts In Southeast Asia

Mar 5, 2018

The Dara’ang are a group of refugees from Myanmar, now living in Thailand. The ethnic minority fled from their home after decades of political oppression and a violent drug trade. They’ve carved out a new life in their adoptive home, many becoming elephant trainers in Thailand.

But College of Idaho political economy professor Rob Dayley says their refugee story is largely unknown to the West.
“But they’ve really made a way for themselves and worked really hard," Dayley says. "And part of our purpose is to kind of tell their stories of triumph and resilience in the face of a lot of difficulty.”

Along with art professor Alice Vinson, Dayley will help lead a group of students who will create a 30-minute documentary about the Dara’ang community. The group received a $35,000 grant to fund the project.

Dayley says the students have already begun work on the documentary, but will film the most significant portion during their three-week trip to the region this summer.

Find reporter Frankie Barnhill on Twitter @FABarnhill

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