How to Help?

Placing a child in an institution should be the last option when thinking about how to help a child. Could we help the family? Could the child be adopted if he doesn’t have family or relatives? Are there any relatives who could look after the child? Starting a children home is easy, but to care for the children is difficult and history tells us that institutions are not good environments for children to develop healthy. As potential supporters of children homes in Myanmar we should carefully consider if there are any other methods that would be better for the children. For us, starting schools in the local villages have been a good alternative.

Children in Families in Cambodia is another alternative for starting orphanages. American missionary Cathleen Jones came to Cambodia 20 years ago to run an orphanage with 120 children but soon ”started realising these kids had parents and families and they wanted to be with them”. Now her Children In Families organisation works to find Cambodian homes for children through kinship or permanent and long-term foster care for children who cannot be reunited with their parents. ”If there is no imminent danger to the child he or she should not be removed, even if the family is dysfunctional,” Ms Jones said, adding that many orphanages refused to release children once they were in their care even if a family environment was available. ”They are kept for years,” she said.

The article about Children in Families was found in The Sydney Morning Herald.


  1. Rev. Vel Za Siama

    Let me respond to the above article. All is opinion based on personal interest and taste. And I can sense that this organization is not faith based and is doing to help the Myanmar children out of humanitarian view which is not bad intention. I don’t want to say “Good” intention either because I do not know what they are up to why they want to help Myanmar children as a family setting and not through institutions.
    One thing strike me is the statement above, “Placing a child in an institution should be the last option.” I find This statement unfaithful and untrue at all! Yes, there may be few children’s homes or orphanages that operates unjustly but that does not mean all institutions are like that! I have a Children’s Home where we are housing 32 poor children right now yet I never seen these couple visited us. That means, he is making judgement only based on his interest.
    One more thing I see is that this couple are not after faith so they will never understand the vision and purpose of the faith based institutions so they don’t see the value of faith based children’s home. The most important thing for faith based children’s home is that children will come to know the Lord Jesus as their Lord and Savior in their lives and we have seen about 98 percent of the children in our children’s home become faithful followers of Jesus Christ and hard working and industrious people. Once they go back to their families back to their villages, they can support their families and they teach and lead their siblings a better way of life. They teach the gospel to their families and friends so through them many come to know Jesus. If you are not a Christian and called by God, you would not understand nor interest about this things.

  2. Dear Stig,

    Thank you for raising awareness of child exploitation.
    Do you have any suggestions for travelers to Burma who wish to donate supplies like toys, food, blankets to orphanages or children hospitals?

    Best wishes

  3. Hiroko

    Hi. I am willing to help and even start a new home for needed children in Myanmar. I have a good friend who wants to do it with me. Now, our question is how to obtain a visa which allows us to stay as long as possible. So far, I found a Myanmar visa allowing 3 month stay, which is called Meditation Visa.
    My questions are:
    1)Will you please give us information on how to obtain a visa suitable to our purpose?

    2)Which city/area of Myanmar do youn think a new home for children is needed?

    3)Is there any orphanage that can take us volunteer workers?
    If so, please advise the details.

    Thank you so much for your assistance.


    • Stig Skaran

      It is great that you want to help needed children in Myanmar, but as you can read on this website, we do not recommend starting orphanages. There are already hundreds of homes, and not a need for more. Our recommendation would be to help families take care of their own children.

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