A conversation with Done Sayachack

Did you know that Laos is home to many rare and unique and exotic animals including tigers, black bears, elephants, deer, dolphins, gibbons, giant catfish and crocodiles?  What you may not know is that Laos is also home to some of the most dangerous snakes in the world.

Done Sayachak was a little girl when she was bitten by a snake which led to complications that resulted in her losing her left hand. Done’s determination to study, and to create a life for herself has not been one without challenges.   Throughout the journey, she has proven to those that underestimated her ability just how wrong they were.

Find out more about how I was inspired to share this series of Laotian women’s stories with you here.

Meet Done in her Inspired story.

Tell us about yourself

I’m Done Sayachack. I am 36. I live and work with Asian Development with Disabled Persons, in the capital of Laos, Vientiane. My nickname is Fon Fa.

What has been your journey of disability?

A snake bit my hand when I was 10.  I caught a disease and had to go through an operation, after this I became disabled.


“Even though we are disabled our hearts are not”

Are there things about you that people misunderstand because of your disability?

When working with friends, they would look at my hand when I raise two arms to work or carry something and they would notice my cut-off hand and doubt my ability to use my hand efficiently.

Where do you get inspiration from?

My father and mother. They always stand by me and be there for me when I feel that I was losing hope.

Which three words would you use to describe yourself?

I’m a fighter, determined, and strong-willed.

What’s one thing that someone has taught you that completely changed your life?

My parents, and my friends who have disability who are successful and show that people with disability can turn their dreams into reality.

Who or what has been the most significant influences on who you are today?

My family, friends, and everyone who have been there for me all these times and have never looked down at me.

What’s one thing about you that surprises people?

Even though I have only one hand, I can do things just like people with both hands


For what are you most grateful today?

I’m grateful for having my parents who are very supportive and help me get through all these times.

Knowing what you know now, what advice would you give your 18-year-old self?

I want to tell my 18-year-old self to study harder to be equipped with knowledge and competencies to make a better living.

Is there something that you would like people to know about you or about people with disability that they might not know?

I want to say that even having disabilities we can make a difference, we can fight and achieve our goal, and make a decent living by ourselves and not be a burden to society. Even though we are disabled our hearts are not.


  1. Congratulations on your attitude to life, Done! Best wishes for the future!

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