Education = A Changed Life

October 31st, 2012 by Tim

Who would think a bench would be so appreciated? Or, a few lights to study by? When the best you’ve got at school is a 5 watt bulb and no chairs or desks, it makes a big difference. Especially when you consider the bench isn’t for sitting, but sit on the floor and use the bench for a desk!

Chin Thet loves going to school.

I wish children in this country were as anxious to go to school and study as the children in countries like Burma. It is so difficult, if not impossible for children in most developing nations to have the opportunity to gain an education. There usually isn’t enough money to eat, let alone spend on uniforms, school supplies and other necessities that families need to provide in order for their children to be educated at a minimal level.

In a remote village in Burma, Orphan’s Promise is working with one of our ministry partners who has been doing wonderful work with the children there.

Their parents have been farming for generations and spend all day and even weeks at a time in the field. It has never occurred to them that there is any other alternative for their children and as a result, are not interested in providing an education for them.

Orphan’s Promise is providing monthly funds to support a number of these pre-schools/learning centers across Burma. Recently, OP provided study benches and more powerful solar powered lighting to assist with the children’s education.

Our Church Planter/partner and his family taught little boys and girls how to read and write who were too young to go to the field to help their parents. Chin Thet was one of them. She lives in a small village of about 20 families, with 18 children under the age of 10. There was no government school, so the only place these little ones can learn to read and write is from the Church Planter, which has come to be known as the “village school”.

Chin writes - “I first learn to read when I was about 8 when a pastor came to my village and help me with my alphabets. Initially, I go to school simply because there were other children to play with. My father has always opposed me going to school, saying that it is a waste of time. He often told me that I would have to do the house work. Many times, I am late for school because my parents asked me to do many things in the morning. At times, I have to skip the entire day because I was too late for the day to join the class.

A little light and some benches – voila, a classroom!

But whenever my parents are out in the field (at times, they are out in the field for as long as two months), I make sure that I do not miss the classes. However, there are many things that compete with my studies. I have to collect water, collect firewood and once the sun sets, we have no lights to study. So my study hours are extremely limited.”

Not only is Chin working hard with her studies, she is also very devoted in her faith. She comes to the church early Sunday morning to help clean up the church for the meeting. If there are any special activities, she volunteers. Some Sunday mornings, she has even been asked to read scripture during the meeting – a real privilege.

It’s hard for us to imagine what a difference these simple things will make in the life of this child and others like her. Or, the difference it will make in the future of their country.

Thank you for caring and for providing opportunities for children like Chin Thet who would otherwise have none.

Tim

About Tim

Orphan's Promise Regional Manager for Asia Tim grew up in a large, loving family of eight on the Sunshine Coast of eastern Australia. After completing a Bachelor of Commerce and a Graduate Diploma in Education, Tim spent seven enjoyable years teaching at a Christian School where he had attended as a child. In January 2005, after many short term mission trips and a growing desire to serve God and underprivileged children overseas, Tim traded his life on the Coast for the rice fields and mountains of northern Thailand. While missing family, friends, surfing, lamb roast, and the occasional odd comforts of home, Thailand is now where Tim feels called and fulfilled to serve Asia’s vulnerable children. In 2006, Tim began working with CBN Thailand’s humanitarian office and assisted with projects supporting Thailand’s hilltribe children. Later in 2009, Tim was delighted to join the Orphan’s Promise team as a Regional Manager to assist with overseeing projects throughout Asia. He feels incredibly blessed to be able to work with Orphan’s Promise and combine his calling to serve vulnerable children, with his passion for ministry, travel and other cultures. Tim is also studying toward his Master of Arts in Holistic Child Development, and is helping Orphan’s Promise to develop new family/community based programs to care for orphans and other vulnerable children in Thailand and across Asia.

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