Tchaho in Laos

Joshua Project has identified the Tchaho only in Laos






Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

Just one village of Tchaho people live in the Gnot-Ou District of Phongsali Province, in the extreme north of the country near the China border.

According to the 1995 census, a total of 24,253 people lived in the Gnot-Ou District, an average of 7.4 people per household, making it an area with one of the highest birth rates in Laos. Even in other districts within the same province birthrates are much lower. Phongsali District has an average family size of 5.6 people, Khoua District 5.8 people, and the Boun-Tai and Boun-Nua districts 5.9 inhabitants per household.

The Tchaho are a Mon-Khmer speaking group. They claim to have migrated into Laos from China, but there is no record of a similarly-named ethnic group in China today.

Animism, with elements of shamanism, is the religion of the Tchaho. Buddhism has made no impact on them. In the past, shamans, or spirit priests lived in most villages. The shamans often took advantage of the fears of the people, demanding high payment and animal sacrifices for their services that sometimes plunged a family in debt for generations.

An early missionary summarized the effects shamanism had on common people.... "This belief in witchcraft is often used by the ruling class to forward selfish interests or to wreak their vengeance upon an offending family, thus taking an unfair advantage through the aid of a superstition that they themselves believe in. The awful shadow cast over Laos life by these superstitions is simply indescribable. The people are religiously like frightened children in the dark. They call and cry to one another, but are only the more frightened by the sounds and echoes of one another's voices, and in their groupings they start and scream as they touch one another, deeming it a devil instead of a friend. They stumble, they reel to and fro, they fall and cry out in a death agony that they would rather abide in the present known evil than to be launched into the future unknown."

Trapped by inward fears and superstitions that they believe too strong to oppose, the Tchaho remain ignorant of the freedom and light that faith in Christ can bring. None have reportedly believed the Gospel.

Prayer Points

* Pray for an open road for the advance of the gospel.
* Ask God to send laborers to reach the Tchaho soon.
* Pray that God's Kingdom would come among the small yet desperately needy Tchaho tribe.

Profile Source:   Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Tchaho
People Name in Country Tchaho
Population in Laos 400
World Population 400
Countries 1
Progress Scale 1.1
Least-Reached Yes
Unengaged Yes (per Finishing the Task)
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names
Country Laos
Region Southeast Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 28  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Phongsali province, Gnot-Ou district..   Source:  Faces of the Unreached in Laos, 1999

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Enthologue Language Map

Ethnolinguistic map from University of Texas or other map

Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Language Unknown (400)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Language Unknown 400
For Primary Language: Language Unknown

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Translation Need Questionable
Resource Format
None reported  
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
100.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
0.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source: Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Profile Source: Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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