Welcome to Thailand now when I was a young man 40 years ago, the country is very, very poor, with lots and lots and lots of people living in poverty.
We decided to do something about it, but we didn't begin with a welfare program or a poverty reduction program.
But we began with a family planning programme following a very successful maternal child health activity sets of activities.
So basically no one would accept family planning if that Children didn't survive.
So the first step.
Get to the Children, get to their mothers and then follow up with family planning, not just child mortality alone.
You need also family planning.
Then let me take you back as to why we needed to do it in my country.
That was the case in 1974 seven Children for family tremendous growth at 3.3%.
There was just no future we needed to reduce the population growth rate.
So we said, Let's do it the women said.
We agree we'll use pills, but we need the doctors to prescribe the pills.
And we had very, very few doctors, so we didn't take no as an answer.
We took no as a question.
So we went to the nurses and the midwives who were also women and did a fantastic job at explaining how to use the pill.
That was wonderful, but it covered only 20% of the country.
What do we do for the other?
Leave them alone and say, Well, they're not medical personnel.
No, we decided to do a bit more.
So we went to the ordinary people that you saw actually below that yellow sign.
I wish they hadn't wiped that because there was Coca Cola there.
We were so much bigger than Coca Cola in those days.
And no difference.
The people they chose, where the people we chose.
They're well known in the community.
They knew that customers will always right, and they were terrific, and they practiced family planning themselves so they could supply pills and condoms throughout the country in every village of the country.
So there, yeah, we went to the people who were seen as the court of the problem to be the solution.
So wherever there were people and you can see what from the women selling things, Here's the floating market, selling bananas and crabs and also contraceptives.
Wherever you find people, you'll find contraceptives in Thailand.
And then we decided, Why not get to religion?
Because in the Philippines the Catholic Church was pretty strong and Thai people are Buddhist, so we went to them and they said, Look, could you help us?
So I'm there the one in room at the yellow holding of all of holy water for the monk to Sprinkle holy water on pills and condoms for the sanctity of the family.
And this picture was sent throughout the country, so it's under.
Monks in the villages were doing the same thing themselves, and the women will say no one never have no side effects.
It's being breast.
That was their perception.
And then we went to teachers.
You need everybody to be involved in trying to provide whatever it is that make humanity a better place.
So we went to the teachers.
Over 1/4 of a 1,000,000 were told about family planning with new alphabet, a B for birth C for condom.
I value Devi vasectomy and then we had a snakes and ladders game where you throw dice if you land anything.
Pro family planning.
You move ahead like Mother takes the pill every night for a very good mother.
Uncle buys condom.
Very good, uncle.
Ankle, get stranglers and use condom.
Start again again.
Education class entertainment and their kids were doing it in schools to we had really races with condoms.
We had Children's condom blowing championship, and before long the condom was known as the girl's best friend in Thailand.
For poor people, diamonds don't make it so.
The condom is the girl's best friend.
Way introduced our first microcredit program in 1975 and the women who organized it said, We only want to lend to women who practice family planning.
If you're pregnant, take care of your pregnancy.
If you're not pregnant, you can take a loan out from us, and that was run by them.
And after 35 36 years, it's still going on.
It's part of the Village Development Bank.
It's not a real bank, but so fun.
We didn't need a big organization to run.
It was run by the Villagers himself, and you probably hardly seen a time.
And there it's always women, women, women women.
And then we thought we had helped America because America is being helping everyone, whether they want help or not.
And this is on the Fourth of July.
We decided to provide vasectomy to all men, but in particular American men, to the front of the queue, right up to the ambassador's residence during his Vandana and the hotel gave us the ballroom for it.
Very appropriate room.
And since it was near lunch time, they said, All right, we'll give you some lunch.
Of course, it must be American coal.
You get two brands, Coke and Pepsi, and then the food.
It's either hamburger or hot dog.
I thought 100.
I will be more symbolic.
And here is this.
Then young man called Willy Bohm, who worked for U.
Obviously, he's had his vasectomy because his hot dogs half eaten on.
He was very happy.
It made a lot of news in America, and it angered some people.
Also, I said, Don't worry.
Come over and do the whole lot of you.
And what happened?
No, this thing, from seven Children to 1.5 Children population growth rate of 3.3 to 0.5.
You could call it the Coca Cola approach if you like.
It was exactly the same thing.
I'm not sure whether Coca Cola followed us, so we followed Coca Cola.
But we're good friends.
And so that's the case of everyone joining in.
We didn't have a strong government.
We didn't have lots of doctors.
But it's everybody's job, have been changed, attitude and behavior.
Then AIDS came along and hit Thailand, and we have to stop doing a lot of good things to fight AIDS.
The government was in denial, denial, denial.
So I worked with ineffective.
So I thought, Well, if you can't go to the government, go to the military.
So I went to the military and asked to borrow 300 radio stations.
They have more than the government, and they've got more guns to the government.
So I asked him what they help us in our fight against HIV, and after I gave them statistics that it s OK.
You can use all the radio stations television station, and that's when we went onto the airwaves.
And then we had a new prime minister.
Soon after that on, he said Meechai, Could you come and join?
He asked me in because he liked my wife a lot, so I said OK.
He became the chairman of National AIDS Committee and increased about 54.
Every ministry, even judges have to be involved in AIDS education.
Everyone and we said, the public institutions, religious institutions, schools everyone was involved.
And here every media person had to be trained for HIV, and we gave every station half a minute extra for advertising to earn more money.
So they were happy with that and then AIDS education in all schools starting from university.
And these are high school kids teaching high school kids.
And the best teachers were the girls, not the boys, and they were terrific.
And these girls who go around teaching about safe sex and HIV were known as Mother Teresa.
And then we went down one more step.
These are primary school kids.
3rd 4th grade, going to every household in the village, every household in the whole of Thailand, giving AIDS information and a condom to every household given by these young kids.
And no parents objected because we were saved trying to save life.
And this it was a life saver on.
We said everyone needs to be involved.
So you have the companies also realizing that sick staff don't work and dead customers don't buy so they will trade.
And then we have this Captain condom with his Harvard MBA going to schools and night spots.
And they have Do you need a symbol of something in every country, every program you need a symbol.
And he is probably the best thing he's ever done was MBA.
And then we gave condoms up.
Everywhere on the streets, everywhere, everywhere in taxis you get condoms and also in traffic.
The policemen give you condoms, our cops and robbers program.
So can you imagine New York policemen giving out condoms?
Of course I can.
And that enjoyed immensely.
I assume standing around right now everywhere mention of the head condom that giving out to all sorts of people and then your new change.
We had hair band clothing and the condom from your mobile phone during the rainy season.
And these were the condoms that we introduced once is weapon of mass protection.
We found, you know, somebody here was searching for the weapon of mass destruction where we have found the weapon of mass protection the condom and then it says here with the American flag Don't leave home without it.
But I have some to give up afterwards.
But let me warn you, these are Thai sais so be very careful and so so you can sue.
You can see that condoms, condoms could do so many things.
Look at this.
I gave this to Al Gore and to build senior also stop global warming, use condoms.
And then this is the picture I mentioned to you, that the weapon of mass protection and let the next Olympics save some lives.
Why just run around and then on then finally, in Thailand, where Buddhists, we don't have a God.
So instead we say in rebel we trust so you can see that we added everything to I endeavor to make life better for the people.
We had condoms in all the refrigerators in the hotels and the schools because alcohol and pass judgement.
And then what happened after all this time, everybody joined in.
According to the end, it declined by new cases of HIV, declined by 90% and according to the World Bank 7.7 million lives were saved.
Otherwise there wouldn't be many types walking around today, so it just showed you you could do something about it.
90% of the funding came from Thailand.
There was political commitment, some financial commitment, and everybody joined in the fight.
So just don't leave it to the specialists and doctors and nurses.
We all need to help.
And then we decided to help people out of poverty now that we got it somewhat out of the way this time not with Government Road, but in cooperation with the business community.
Because poor people are business people who lack business skills and access to credit.
Those are the things to be provided by the business community.
We're trying to turn them into barefoot entrepreneurs, little business people.
The only way out of poverty is through business enterprise, So that was stunned.
So the money goes from the company into the village via tree planting, so it's not a freak.
If they plant the trees and the money goes into their microcredit fund, which we call the village development back, everybody joins him and they feel they own the bank because they had brought the money in and before that you can borrow the money you need to be trained, and we believe it brought it.
Help the poor, those living in poverty, access to credit must be a human right.
Access to credit must be a human right.
Otherwise they'll never get out of poverty.
And then before getting a loan, you must be trained.
Here's what we call a barefoot MBA teaching people how to do business so that when they borrow money, they'll succeed with the business.
So these are some of the business mushrooms, crabs, vegetables, trees, fruits.
And this is very interesting.
Nike ice cream and Nike Biscuits.
This is a village sponsored by Nike.
They said they should stop making shoes and clothes make these better because we can afford them.
And then we have silk Thai silk.
Now we're making Scottish tartans, says you can see on the left to sell to all people of Scottish ancestors.
So anyone sitting in and watching TV can in touch with me.
And then this is our answer to Starbucks in China.
Coffee and condoms.
See Starbucks keep you awake.
We keep you awake and alive.
Can you imagine it every Starbucks that you can also get condoms so you can order your condoms with your cappuccino.
And then now, finally, in education, we want to change the school as being underutilized into a place where it's a lifelong learning center for everyone.
We call this our school based integrated rural development, and it's a center, a focal point for economic and social development.
So re do the school, make it serve the community needs.
And here is a bamboo building, all of them a bamboo.
This is a geodesic dome made of bamboo, and I'm sure Buckminster Fuller, what would be very, very proud to see a bamboo geodesic dome and reuse vegetables around the school ground so they raise their own vegetables?
And then finally, I firmly believe if we want the MDGs toe work, the Millennium Development Goals, we need to add family planning to it.
Of course, Tom Mortality first and then family planning.
Everyone needs family planning service.
It's underutilized, so we have now found the weapon of mass protection.
We also ask the next Olympics to be involved in saving lives, and then finally, that is our network.