Childhood should be filled with carefree innocence, but many migrant children are often given responsibilities far beyond their years. For this grade 3 student at Champion Learning Centre, her responsibility includes the care of her 2 year old sister. Teachers were concerned when the grade 3 student had been absent from school for a number of consecutive days. She has a serious heart condition which requires a long operation in Chiang Mai (hopefully to be occurring soon) and teachers were worried she was having medical problems. When she eventually came to school, she told the teachers that her mother now had a job at a factory. With no one to look after her 2 year old sister, this became her responsibility, meaning she had to stay home. Worried for her education the teachers decided that she could bring her sister to school if it meant that she could come herself. For the last couple of weeks, her little sister has been coming to grade 3. She sits on the desk beside her big sister, or can often be found sleeping curled up on the bench. At lunchtime she lovingly feeds her baby sister and makes sure she is well looked after. Unfortunately this is not a perfect solution, as she is often distracted from her schooling by having to look after her sister, but it is currently the best option available. Teachers at Champion are very understanding of the difficulties students face at home and strive to make school an enjoyable and safe place to laugh and learn.
Hello from “little” Burma in Mae Sot, Thailand. I finally got here and was picked up by one of the BMWEC office staff in a 4-wheel beaten up truck. We checked me into my guesthouse, then hit a coffee house to get acquainted. After a huge downpour, we were off to Good Morning School to pick up the young Burmese manager and his new wife to go off in the country and pick up pig food. It was mentioned that it was, “not too far” and “wouldn’t take too long.”