Pimpan Saranrat, popular YouTuber and online retailer has come under fire after she donated half a million baht to finance a project to improve the livelihood of children in the mountains of Chiang Mai.
The project coincided with the National Children’s Day and according to her YouTube video clip, it cost Pimpan Saranrat, more widely known by her YouTube alias of Pimrypie, 550,000 baht.
The money went into installing solar cell panels, buying shoes and televisions for children in the far-reaching pocket of Moo Ban Mae Kerb in tambon Na Kian, Omkoi district, and setting up a vegetable patch in the village which the YouTube user described as one of the country’s “most remote and least accessible to education” locations.
In the video clip posted a few days ago, Ms Saranrat said she wanted the children to have electricity so they will be able to watch TV and be inspired to have a dream.
However, her campaign has been criticised by Pinkaew Luangaramsri, a social scientist at Chiang Mai University, as “an exercise by the urban middle class”.
The Research and Development for Quality of Life Foundation said it had already installed solar cell panels at the Moo Ban Mae Kerb last December.
Thai netizens have fired back in anger at Pinkaew Luangaramsri on social media. Many posting comments stating it’s her own money and she is trying to help children in need.