Boarding Schools to make studying possible - Children of the Mekong

Boarding Schools to make studying possible

We are in Taunggyi, the capital of the Shan state. Because it is the largest state in Myanmar it suffers from a slower pace of development than that of its neighbours.

This delay in development particularly affects the isolated villages which still have no access to running water or electricity. Furthermore, the area also includes a large concentration of ethnic minorities such as the Shans, the Palaungs, the Akha, the Han, the Pooh and the Intha.

The congregation of Zetman was founded in the year 2000 by the Bishop of Taunggyi, with the goal of coming to the aid of the very poorest using local initiatives and adapting them to their requirements. Knowing what the conditions are like in the remote villages and, wanting to come to the help of the young girls who wish to pursue their education, the Nuns in the congregation decided to create their own ‘Boarding House’ in an area called Payapiu, located above the town. Unfortunately, their limited means did not allow them to offer their students decent living conditions. A number of the children were therefore falling ill and finding it difficult to study.

Children of Taunggyi

The Nuns, therefore, came up with a project to construct a large and unique permanent Boarding house where all of the girls would be able to board and study in decent conditions. To finance this project, the Sisters asked the Children of the Mekong for help.

After the request was approved, and thanks to the generosity of our donors, work began quite quickly on the land adjoining the buildings which made up the old house and were acquired thanks to the funds received from the Bishop of Taunggyi.

Workers build the first floor ©ChildrenOfTheMekong

A dozen workmen threw themselves into the construction of the home, which is split into 2 large partitions; the first floor which will serve as the dormitory for the girls, and the ground floor, a dedicated space for studying, healthcare, and relaxation. The rainy season, which was particularly long and intense this year, did not make the task easy for the workers who were obliged, on several occasions, to cease working for a number of days. In parallel to this project, a similar home in the area of Payapiu was also built, designed to welcome male boarders coming from the remote zones of Myanmar.

The study’s room place on the ground floor ©ChildrenOfTheMekong

The problem, even though they seemed very attractive, is that the Boarding houses were still short of equipment, for example, bunk beds, tables, chairs, mosquito nets, etc…

The contacts Children of the Mekong have in the area are a priest and a member of the Zetman congregation. They are also responsible for the sponsorship programmes of both Boarding Houses. Their excellent management of these programmes as well as the projects that they have previously carried out have reinforced the trust that Children of the Mekong have in them. The association, therefore, did not hesitate to support this project by buying items to furnish the homes.

The new Boarding House of Payapiu in Taunggyi ©ChildrenOfTheMekong

The drawings for the tables and the beds were designed by a local carpenter, who, helped by several workers, managed to build the 44 beds and 33 tables. The chairs, for their part, were purchased from a store, as well as the mosquito nets. Thanks to the generosity of the donors, we have been able to rapidly furnish the homes.

The first floor serves as the dormitory for the girls ©Enfants du Mékong

From now on, the children of Taunggyi have homes that are able to provide them with the right conditions for studying and for living. 

Young girls posing in front of their new home ©Enfants du Mékong

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