Small Talk

Pri­jayanat Kalam­pa­sut talks to Phichet Rerkpreecha of Line Thai­land about the pop­u­lar free­ware app’s in­volve­ment in a UNICEF ini­tia­tive that ben­e­fits the king­dom’s un­der­priv­i­leged chil­dren

Thailand Tatler - - CONTENTS -

Phichet Rerkpreecha, head of cor­po­rate af­fairs at LINE Thai­land, talks about the pop­u­lar free­ware app’s in­volve­ment in a UNICEF ini­tia­tive ben­e­fit­ing the king­dom’s un­der­priv­i­leged chil­dren

Since 1946 the united na­tion’s Chil­dren’s Fund, more com­monly known as UNICEF, has been striv­ing to al­le­vi­ate the plight of dis­ad­van­taged chil­dren world­wide. While Thai­land has come a long way in tack­ling the prob­lems faced by its un­der­priv­i­leged young­sters, there is al­ways more to be done. Which is why this month LINE Thai­land has joined forces with UNICEF Thai­land to or­gan­ise a char­ity fun run to raise funds for chil­dren’s causes. The run takes place on Septem­ber 30 at Rama IX Park, start­ing at 4:30 am. Phichet Rerkpreecha, head of cor­po­rate af­fairs at LINE Thai­land, tells us more.

What is the ul­ti­mate goal of this char­ity run?

The ul­ti­mate goal of the UNICEF LINE Run is to raise money that will go to­wards im­prov­ing the qual­ity of life of un­der­priv­i­leged and dis­ad­van­taged chil­dren across Thai­land. With this event, we also want to raise aware­ness among the gen­eral pub­lic about the need to help and as­sist. All pro­ceeds will be do­nated to UNICEF and their var­i­ous ini­tia­tives. We be­lieve that the pop­u­lar­ity of LINE Friends char­ac­ters will help to at­tract peo­ple to this event and cre­ate a greater sense of aware­ness. At the same time, our new tech­nol­ogy, LINE Bea­con, will keep all run­ners en­gaged by pro­vid­ing in­ter­ac­tive live in­for­ma­tion dur­ing the event.

What drove you to col­lab­o­rate with UNICEF?

LINE has ac­tu­ally been work­ing with UNICEF on a global scale since 2015. Through our strate­gic part­ner­ship with them, we have been able to lever­age LINE users to raise funds and in­crease aware­ness of the global is­sue of des­ti­tute chil­dren. The ac­tiv­i­ties with this syn­ergy have been well re­ceived.

What makes this run dif­fer­ent from other char­ity runs?

The UNICEF LINE Run is the first such char­ity event in Thai­land to in­tro­duce pop­u­lar LINE char­ac­ters such as Brown and Cony, among oth­ers, as the main theme of the event. Par­tic­i­pants will re­ceive of­fi­cial LINE prod­ucts in­clud­ing run­ning jer­sey, wa­ter bot­tle, special LINE sticker sets and a Brown medal on com­ple­tion of the run. The UNICEF LINE Run has three dis­tance cat­e­gories— 2.5km, 5km and 10km—so it of­fers a fun chal­lenge for both recre­ational run­ners and se­ri­ous ath­letes. The routes and in­di­vid­ual progress can be fol­lowed us­ing LINE Bea­con, which works via Blue­tooth. The bea­cons will pro­vide real time run­ning per­for­mance and dis­tance re­ports to run­ners au­to­mat­i­cally via their mo­bile phones. Re­fresh­ments will also be pro­vided on the day and we have pre­pared ad­di­tional en­ter­tain­ment ac­tiv­i­ties for chil­dren.

What chal­lenges did you face in or­gan­is­ing this event?

It took us about a year to plan ev­ery­thing from A-Z. This is LINE’s first char­ity run and it will be one of the first that uses API and Bea­con tech­nol­ogy. Us­ing such new tech­nol­ogy for the first time can be dif­fi­cult of course, but we have re­ceived good co­op­er­a­tion from all rel­e­vant par­ties to en­sure that the event will be suc­cess­ful and run smoothly. Us­ing th­ese tech­nolo­gies and bring­ing in our LINE Friends char­ac­ters should make the run unique and ex­cit­ing for ev­ery­one in­volved.

How many peo­ple are ex­pected to par­tic­i­pate?

The more peo­ple we can en­cour­age to take part, the more help we can pro­vide for chil­dren in need. Right now we are ex­pect­ing to have about 8,000 to 8,500 run­ners join the char­ity run.

Will this be­come a yearly event?

This is our first char­ity run but def­i­nitely not our first char­i­ta­ble ac­tiv­ity. As a com­pany LINE will con­tinue to give back to Thai­land and the pub­lic.

come to­gether LINE Thai­land and UNICEF are rais­ing funds for dis­ad­van­taged chil­dren with a fun run

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