Thai Embassy welcomes Thai Youth Leaders joining President Obama’s initiative to promote closer links between ASEAN and the United States


Seven Thai YSEALI Fellows with the Ambassador and the Embassy’s Staff

On June 5th, 2015, the Thai Embassy hosted lunch for a group of Thai youth leaders who took part in President Obama’s Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiatives (YSEALI) and discussed with them about their experiences in the United States and how they planned to use what they have learned for the benefit of their communities.

Seven Thai youth leaders from various backgrounds were selected to participate in this YSEALI program and had spent 5 weeks living and working in various states, such as Missouri, Washington, Colorado and Montana. The program wrapped up in Washington, D.C., with chances to engage with U.S. policy makers, including a town hall meeting with President Obama and networking activities with participants from other ASEAN countries.

Launched in 2013, the YSEALI was initiated by President Obama to build leadership capabilities of youth in the region and to strengthen people-to-people ties between the United States and ASEAN. Thailand fully supports this initiative as a part of the ongoing effort to strengthen the bonds of friendship between Thai and American peoples.


The seven fellows are; Aroonporn Prasongchaikul, elected twice as a city council member of Nonthaburi Province; Phensiri Pansiri, Manager of the Foundation of Child Understanding working to combat human trafficking and to protect the victims in both Thailand and neighboring countries; Kassirin Phiboon, Field and training staff of the Institute for Sustainable Agriculture Community, the sector that is a backbone of the Thai society; Aushim Merchant, a successful young businessman working as ASEAN Operations Head of MK Aromatics Limited; Kamol Homklin, a journalist from Media for happiness who has a strong passion to develop his hometown Ubon Ratchathani Province; Keawta Sangsuk, Director of Our Choice Foundation, a self-funded organization to provide comprehensive assistance to HIV/AIDS patients ; and Tidarat Yingchareon, Program Manager of a non-profit organization working on women’s empowerment and government decentralization.









At the Embassy, the seven fellows also gave an interview with Voice of America (VOA) about their experiences as YSEALI participants.


Pitichoke Chulapamornsri