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Samaggi Samagom ("Samaggi"), The Thai Association in the UK, was established in 1901 by King Rama VI of Thailand.[1] Samaggi Samagom is Thailand's only student association under royal patronage. It adheres to its original purpose as a locus for Thai students, roughly 10,000 in the UK, to connect with one another. The Thai Embassy in London and its Office of Educational Affairs (OEA) has a large presence in the association's activities, with embassy representatives, and sometimes the ambassadors themselves, attending Samaggi Samagom events. The close working relationship is reflected in a Samaggi office located inside the OEA, but mostly by embassy funding of Samaggi's academic events. Details of each event, the aim and budget, must be submitted to the embassy and OEA for prior approval.Samaggi Samagom organises many events for the Thai community in the UK, including Samaggi Karaoke Night, Samaggi Bowling Competition, and seminars. The major events organised by Samaggi Samagom are the Samaggi Games and Samaggi Night, a concert. The association’s recreational events, such as its annual concert and sports day, are funded by Thai companies.

Samaggi Games

Samaggi Samagom's biggest event is the annual Samaggi Games.[2] This is a sports day that involves several thousands of people, and is well attended by most Thai students as well as Thai expatriate workers in the UK. Many Thai companies use this opportunity to advertise their respective firms. The firms range from PTTto small Thai restaurants in the UK wishing to reach a broader market.[3] Samaggi Games is open to all Thai students in the UK and hosts more than 1,000 Thai students from around the UK who come to play and support the games. Sports such as football, basketball, tennis, badminton, table tennis, squash, chair ball, and traditional Thai games such as Thai chess are contested.

Samaggi seminars

Seminars held by Samaggi in 2007 included the "Happiness Index", a talk by researcher Khun Nattavudh Powdthavee on the measurement of happiness; a talk by Gordon Bennett from Amnesty International on the death penalty; and a seminar on the future of Thailand's 18th constitution, which was being drafted at the time, led by Peter Leyland, a professor of public law at SOAS, University of London, and London Metropolitan University.  

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