Ten Years of Oversea Volunteer of Love Myanmar Club
Professor of Departments of Civics and Education, Yen Miao Kuei, have organized the teacher’s camp in Myanmar every summer for ten years with Love Myanmar Club. Over the years, they have helped raised 250,000 books, 161 laptops and influenced over 1300 teachers and administrators to improve the education for the next generation of Burmese Chinese.
In one session in 2008, one Chinese teacher asked Yen “Will you come again next year?” His eager and passion for learning is the cause of this long and heart-warming 10 year oversea relationship for the love of education.
The politic in Myanmar is very unstable, the military government prohibit Chinese schools, coupled with the ethnic conflicts against the Chinese, the Chinese teaching in Myanmar can only be done in the name of Buddhist activities to avoid inspection. Chinese education is supported by the government support and lack of professional teachers, books, and even a suitable classroom. There was only a handful of books in local libraries and textbooks used are copied versions.
One alumni, Chao, went back to Myanmar and worked as vice principal. He said that Chinese school students usually goes to Chinese school at 5:30am and goes to Burmese school at 8:00am. When Burmese school finish at 3:30pm, they have to go back to Chinese school and stay till 6:00pm. The students have to be highly motivated and responsible in learning.
Not only that, "Those who just graduated from junior high school have to teach at primary school and high school graduates teach junior high school students. Many Chinese teachers are just teenagers that have to study while teaching." Most of the Burmese Chinese teachers have not received professional training, but have to teach various subjects from toddler to junior high school students. They often don’t know how to overcome teaching setbacks. Plus, their monthly salary is only two to three thousand NTD month, most teachers have to work part time jobs to make ends meet, resulting in high turnover rate of teachers.
When seeing all this difficulties in Chinese teaching, Alumni Chao have made up his mind for a better learning and teaching environment. So he turned to Prof. Yen for help. That’s why she went to Myanmar in 2008 with 6 graduate students and 1 teacher and this is the how Love Myanmar Club started.