Stand By Me

Myanmar

In Myanmar (formerly known as Burma), families live in isolated villages, days away from the nearest town. Straw huts with bare bamboo walls are home to people who labour in the scorching sun day after day just to scrape by. 

While in recent years, western embargos have been lifted, people are still trapped in poverty with 29% of children suffering from stunting due to malnutrition. Although education for children is compulsory, hundreds of thousands of children do not have access to school and for those who do, the many obstacles they face result in 6 out of 10 children dropping out before the age of 14

1998

We adopted 14 orphaned children living in the Chin Hills in a shed on meagre rations and built them a family home for adoptive parents to look after them

2003

We were made aware of an orphan crisis, compelling us to adopt a further 800 children. Despite the challenges, it was one of the best decisions we’ve made

2005

We purchased the purpose built Lois School to allow Ciang, an amazing head teacher, to educate 500 of Kalaymyo’s poorest children

2006

We started running summer camps for children in remote areas providing nutritious meals, fun games and medical care

2008

When Cyclone Nargis hit Myanmar killing 100,000 people, we had to act. A Stand by Me team was mobilised and provided aid for over 7,000 people for 6 months

2009

To house and care for Cyclone Nargis orphans, the Yangon Children’s Village was built comprising of four children’s homes

2009

The GCEC School opened its doors to provide an excellent education to over 300 children in Tahan

2012

The Kalaymyo Children’s Village was completed, allowing us to provide family style accommodation to many of our orphaned and abandoned children

2013

To provide education to the poorest of Tamu’s children, the Sophia Academy was opened and today is allowing 200 kids to escape from illiteracy and poverty

2015

Land was purchased in Shan State for a new children’s village for children orphaned as a result of war and children at risk of child trafficking. 

2017

The Shan State Children's Village opened. The two homes now provide a loving and comfortable environment for 20 children who were previously living without care

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When Andrew was just nine days old, Cyclone Nargis devastated his village, killing his mother and leaving his father paralysed. Living in a makeshift bamboo hut, Andrew’s sister Hannah at the tender age of seven became the family’s sole provider.

When their father sadly passed away, Andrew and his sister Hannah came to the Yangon Children’s Village. Andrew was underdeveloped and scared of other children but since then he has blossomed into a happy, energetic child. He’s healthy, partly thanks to his love of eating grapes and he loves to make his friends laugh. We love Andrew’s smile, eagerness to learn and his enthusiasm for all of life’s opportunities.

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Just a toddler, Ruth was found on the streets, completely alone. We later discovered that she had never had a home as her mum was a beggar who slept at the train station. She had never experienced a ‘normal’ happy childhood.

We welcomed Ruth into our family at the Yankin Agape Children’s Home and ever since she’s been enjoying the happy childhood she deserves. She has caring and attentive ‘adoptive’ parents and she has lots of fun playing with her ‘brothers and sisters’. Her best friend at the home is Samuel who, like her, was also found on the streets. Ruth is affectionate and loving and she’s very generous with her kisses and cuddles.

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Living in poor conditions in the Chin Hills, Vung Pee contracted TB. Her parents were also suffering from poor health and couldn’t afford to send Vung Pee to school or to buy medication or regular food to keep her healthy.

We accepted Vung Pee into our Lois School where she has excelled and is a friendly, talkative and polite student who loves to sing and play. She no longer has TB and is in great health. Vung Pee says that when she grows up “I would like to become a doctor and help cure the sick”. We believe in her. We can’t wait for the day we can call her Dr Vung Pee!

Play the video 3min 52sec
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Naomi was a special surprise. At just nine days old she was abandoned outside our home in Tamu, with only a piece of a calendar to mark her date of birth.

We knew we had been entrusted with this precious gift of a lovely baby girl and we accepted her into our family and named her Naomi. From abandoned to accepted, from being alone in the world to having a family who adore her, Naomi’s life is now full of love. Her beautiful smile tells nothing of the difficulty that lead to her becoming part of the family but shows the vast opportunity ahead of her and the joy and love that every children should experience.

Play the video 3min 32sec
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