Les Enfants du Mékong

The charitable organisation Les 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. In Cambodia and the Philippines, the level of academic establishments do not always allow the students to meet the required level expected by employers. Also, many children live very far away from the cities where those establishments 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.


2014 saw the beginning of TFWA Care’s support for Les 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 Burma. In the following years, our support was extended in the Philippines’s province of Cebu where families often struggle to send their children to school.

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.



Every girl and every boy should have the right to a quality education so that they can have more chances in life, which will lead to employment opportunities, better health and turn them into concerned citizens. This year, TFWA Care will team up once again and continue to support 20 students at Les Enfants de Mékong’s education center in Cebu. Hand in hand, we will lift some of the financial burden in their families and provide them with scholarship, accommodation and mentorship outside the classrooms to help them acquire the necessary life skills. Great progress has been achieved with quality education and good mentorship to prepare the underprivileged youth for the real world. TFWA Care is proud to work with Les Enfants de Mékong and send these young adults to the right path.

Project in 2016

Les Enfants du Mékong provides access to education for children whose families do not have the minimum income to purchase uniforms, books, transport and other basic requirements; all essential expenses that many families cannot pay. To gain sponsorship from Les Enfants du Mékong, children must show a very high level of motivation that is reflected in their grades – the aim being to help children progress as far as they can in order to make sure they find a good job that will allow them in turn to help their families.

With TFWA Care’s support in 2016, education, accommodation and general care was provided for 20 students at Les Enfants de Mékong’s centre in Cebu in the Philippines. The education provided also included life training, culture and sport, ensuring that the children were equipped not just for employment, but for life.

Situated in the east of Burma, the state of Shan suffered violent repression under military rule. Although now at peace, the scars of the repression remain, and villagers in this remote part of the country are mostly seasonal workers, without their own land and often without the means to feed and educate their families.

 

Les Enfants du Mékong sponsors dozens of children in the remotest parts of Shan state, including several girls under the care of the Zetaman Sisters in the Mobye region. Thanks to that support, these girls have been able to begin an education that would otherwise have been impossible – however, given their limited resources and the rising number of girls to care for, the Zetaman Sisters are no longer able to guarantee decent studying and living conditions for the girls.

 

Sister Bibiana and Father Basilio Ban have won the support of Enfants du Mékong to build new boarding schools for the children in their care, one for girls and one for boys. The support of TFWA Care in 2015 provided most of the funds needed to complete this project.