What better way to celebrate World Humanitarian Day on Sunday, August 19, than to become a humanitarian yourself? Most of us are busy with our own activities, but it doesn’t hurt to start offering a little of our time each day, no matter how busy we are, for the good of others. And if you are already devoted to this cause, kudos to you! Below are some of the many places that need help in Myanmar.
- Make a Difference at Third Story Project
Third Story Project is an organization providing books for children all over Myanmar. They produce books with positive messages for children, and distribute them to rural places with the help of local organizations. If you have any English books for kids, this is a good place to visit. You can also participate in story telling events after undergoing a few days of training. If you enjoy interacting with and empowering young children, take a look at this organization and check out their website at thirdstoryproject.com.
- Mary Chapman School for the Deaf
Located in an accessible area near downtown Yangon, this school runs grades up through Grade 8 and offers vocational training such as tailoring and massage for their graduates. Any help related to these services is welcome, as well as teaching them English or becoming a sports coach. Prior knowledge of sign language is not required as you can work with a translator, although sign language classes can also be requested at the school itself.
Location: 2, Than Ta Man St., Pyay (West) Ward, Yangon
Phone: 09 520 1910, 09 969 259658, 09 775 005360
- Volunteer with Ethnic Minorities
Working with ethnic minorities on the Myanmar-Thailand border is an NGO called Open Mind Projects. Many of the children there are stateless, and of mixed Karen, Burmese and Thai nationalities. Open Mind sets up mobile learning camps where you can teach them a range of subjects, from English to IT, all the while being surrounded by nature and living like the local villagers. For more information, go to openmindprojects.org.
- Myanmar Mobile Education Project
Although not the first mobile education service in Myanmar, this project is the first to provide free education to child laborers working in teashops and road-side restaurants in underprivileged communities throughout the country. Their mobile classrooms help the kids learn basic math and literacy skills, as well as computer skills. If you have some teaching experience and would like to volunteer or donate, please visit their website at mymeproject.org or call them at +95 (9) 795784380.
- Help Flood Victims
As a result of heavy monsoon rains, nearly 50,000 people have been displaced from their homes as of this month. Daw Khin Kyi Foundation is one organization aiding these people by delivering food, drinking water, clothing and other necessities to the affected areas. If you are interested, you can go directly to their Yangon office or give them a call.
Location: Room 004-006, Inya Lake Hotel, 37 Kabar Aye Pagoda Road.
Phone: 09-450692929, 09-254389959, 09-250807055
- Food Not Bombs
Looking to volunteer in a place that’s not too far away? Participate in Food Not Bombs, an organization based in downtown Yangon that provides food and other necessities to homeless families on the streets. Every Friday evening, they have meet ups where they cook food and distribute them to homeless families on the streets of downtown Yangon. These meetups are open to anyone and accept food donations, as well as money. They also teach English to homeless children on those occasions, so if you have any skills to offer, don’t hesitate to contact them on their Facebook page @fnbmyanmar.
These are not the only charitable organizations out there in Yangon, so if you know anymore we haven’t mentioned, let us know!