Where do the children come from?

Most of the children in faith-based children homes in Myanmar come from villages in the rural areas of Chin, Kachin, Shan, and Karen State. Most of the homes that we have been in contact with are operated by Chin nationals, and therefore most of the children also come from Chin State. Children fra Shan State is most likely to end up in a Buddhist Monestery, since most Shan are Buddhist. Most children from Chin, Kachin, and Karen State end up in Christian children’s homes, since these ethnic groups are mostly Christian.

The children mostly come from remote villages with little access to the rest of the world. They have to travel far and the parents are not familiar with the cities (so they don’t know how it is like for their children to grow up in the city). According to research and personal observations, more than half of the children living in Children Homes in Yangon have living parents. Download the reasearch done by Yinthway Foundation on behalf of UNICEF here.

Why do they come?

There are many reasons, but poverty and education is on top of the list. The parents are also sometimes pursuaded to give their children to children homes for the sake of education. Some people that we have talked with have walked from village to village to collect children for his “orphanage,” sometimes with 10 children accompanying him back to Yangon. This is all unregistered and we are asking ourselves: “Isn’t this human trafficking?”

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