The charitable organisation Enfants du Mékong grew from the creation of the Association des Amis du Pensionnat Saint-Joseph in Laos in 1958. Its mission is to educate and train young people in South East Asia to enable them to improve their living conditions, and it now operates in seven different countries in the region through sponsorship programmes and the development of infrastructure for education.
Quality education is the first step to eradicate poverty in developing countries. Until today South East Asian nations are still developing their economy and the level of academic establishments do not always allow the students to meet the required level expected by employers. In many situation, many children live very far away from the main cities where most schools and universities are located. Hence Enfants du Mekong has decided to start running educational centres that allow children to be fostered, taken care of, fed and helped in their studies with extra classes in this part of the globe.
2014 saw the beginning of TFWA Care’s support for Enfants du Mékong, through the construction of a boarding house for senior high school and university students at Inle Lake in a remote region of Myanmar. In the following years, our support was extended in the Philippines and Thailand.
Project in 2019
Thailand’s economic development in the last decade and the growth of its tourism industry is still unable to lift the entire nation out of poverty. While infrastructures have been developed such as airports and paved roads in the major cities, there are many places still untouched by the nation’s economic success. In the Tak District, in the northernmost region of Thailand, schools are scarce and almost every child are only able to receive pre-school education; if there is a school around.
This year, TFWA Care will continue its partnership with Les Enfants du Mekong and aid the construction of three new kindergarten classrooms and a library in the remote village of Poblaki in the mountains of Tak Province, Thailand. Currently, there is only one kindergarten and primary school that operates in Poblaki that was built by a missionary, Father Quintard. The steady increase of students from neighbouring villages urgently requires the construction of new classrooms. With the help of TFWA Care, we can provide more space for children from the neighbouring villages to receive proper early education.
Project in 2018
The education system in Myanmar has suffered from major dysfunction and terrible lack of resources caused by decades of dictatorship in the nation. Outside its capital, there are hardly schools that can accommodate its youth.
Last year TFWA Care funded the enlargement of the only primary school at Sisong Village to provide up to 10th grade education. The aid helped construct three new classrooms to accommodate 8-10 grades. Sisong is a remote village located in the mountains bordering the south of Shan and Kayah State of Myanmar. In the past, the children of this remote province were only able to finish 7th grade schooling because of the lack of resources. Until today, Sisong is accessible only by simple trails on foot or motorbike. Because of this situation, locals are forced to stop schooling at this very early stage.
With the TFWA Care grant, Les Enfants du Mékong was able to add new classrooms and provide quality education up to the 10th grade in Sisong. Every boy and girl should have the right to a quality education so that they can have more chances in life.
Sisong primary school official opening
With the Philippines’s large and young population, job opportunities are scarce and the competition is very high. While the country showed a surge of economic growth in the last five years, the distribution of wealth has not necessarily touched every household. The poverty rate remains very high in the Philippines especially in its rural areas. In its far off provinces, parents are not able to afford their children’s schooling.
Last year, TFWA Care continued its support to 20 students at Enfants de Mékong’s education center in Cebu. Hand in hand, the partnership lifted some of the financial burden in their families and provided them with scholarship, accommodation and mentorship to help them acquire the necessary life skills. Major progress was achieved to the beneficiaries thanks to the quality education at Enfants de Mekong’s centres and the mentorship they have received outside the classrooms have empowered the students to better prepare themselves for the real world.
TFWA Care was proud to work with Enfants de Mékong to have enabled to send these young adults to the right path.