An 11-year-old boy is currently devoting most of his time to helping support his schooling and his family by selling bags of boiled corn on his bicycle across the city of Pattaya.
The boy, who is nicknamed ‘Ness’, is a regular sight by local Pattaya residents leaving Soi Sukhumvit Pattaya 67 every day with his bicycle before riding around the city. He told local news media that he lives with his parents. His father is a construction worker while his mother is a maid. Both have had their income affected by Covid-19 measures in Chonburi.
Ness would help his mother boiling corn in the morning before hopping on his bike to sell bags of boiled corn every day in the area of Pattaya city particularly around Soi Buakhao, South Pattaya, and Central Pattaya where there are a lot of domestic tourists and local people.
A bag of two corn cobs would earn about 35 baht in margin, Ness said. During the school break, he would have more time to ride around and sell his product but when the semester started, he would only sell after school. Schools are currently out of session for the year but may be delayed for reopening in May due to a Covid19 breakout in Thailand.
Ness said the choice to sell corn was his own and he was not forced to do so by his family. He worked independently and being born and raised in Pattaya he was very comfortable on his own riding around the city. He said he never had an issue with safety although admitted he had skipped school before to help his family earn money but now understood the importance of school.
Ness said: “I am now 11 years old but still studying in Primary 1. My family’s income has always been a struggle and became worse during the Covid-19 pandemic”
“I have to work to help my parents to earn money and support my family because of Covid-19 and as I already love to ride a bicycle and Pattaya is my own hometown, I think riding a bike around town to sell corn is not so bad. Sometimes, I would tell my mom I am going to take a day off on Saturdays or Sundays to take a rest or play with my friends because I didn’t really have time to meet my friends because of the work. My parents never have a problem with this as it’s my choice to work and support the family even though I am only a kid.”
“I would be very happy if you found me riding around Pattaya and help me buy my corn cobs. I am not interested in hand outs of money I would prefer to work for it,” he stated.
Ness can be seen most afternoons in and around the Soi Buakhao area and Central Pattaya on his bicycle with a big smile and plenty of corn. As he gets older he said he plans to start his own businesses and expand in the Pattaya area.
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