This year, we are holding ETB's annual fundraiser online, thereby broadening our reach from our local roots in Ashland, Oregon, to our national and global supporters.
For the upcoming year, we are focusing on funding three main areas of need: education, on-site improvement projects, as well as food and transportation assistance.
Read more in our email below or go directly to our shop: http://eyestoburmagiving.org/shop/...
Thank you to all of our supporters who responded so generously to our fall newsletter. In these times when the world feels rife with insurmountable problems, Eyes to Burma proves that individuals like ourselves can have a direct, positive impact on the lives of others.
We also wish to thank the following organizations and individuals for their support of the community at the local Mae Sot level:
Mae Tao Clinic
Dr. Chris and other MTC visiting doctors
Aussie Friends of Eyes to Burma
Ride High Foundation and Rob Callander
Medecins Sans Frontiere's Malaria Clinic
There are many others who have helped this year in Mae Sot, and your ongoing support is sincerely appreciated. We could not do what we do without your help.
Our appreciation wouldn't be complete without naming Oma, Oo Kyaw, and Moon; the community headmen; and, the community members working on on-site improvement projects.
We are excited to report there is a new community-owned truck and that our focus on education sponsorship continues strong. Also, this fall, our annual fundraiser will be held online beginning in October. Thank you for your support and interest in ETB and the community we work with!
Voici Fred, un impressionnant monsieur British de 73 ans, aussi gentil que dévoué, qui fait des miracles et sauve des vies, au quotidien. Il était pilote d'avio...n et photographe, jusqu'à ce que sa job l'amène à Mae Sot, en Thaïlande. Il se retrouva par coïncidence dans une communauté de 500 réfugiés birmans, au beau milieu d'un dépotoir. Il était sous le choc de constater que ces gens vivaient dans la misère la plus totale et mourraient... à seulement 5 minutes de la ville et que personne ne faisait rien. Il se devait d'agir. Ça fait que depuis 9 ans, il habite avec eux à temps plein! Il est devenu en quelque sorte le papa de la communauté. Il prend soin d'eux, construit des maisons, développe, trouve des médicaments, etc. Récemment, il aura même réussi à installer l'électricité et l'eau courante! Il se lève très tôt, tous les matins, pour accompagner les enfants à l'école. Bref, l'implication de Fred est incroyable. Mais il a besoin d'aide. Si vous êtes médecin, infirmier ou professeur, et que vous désirez faire une différence et donner votre temps... Fred et ses enfants ont besoin de vous! Vous pouvez contacter Fred, via son organisme Eyes to Burma.
Small update on ETB
AFOETB small update.
Buddha hoilday today, the community will band together to clean Buddha Land today to make way for the circus on Thursday at 4pm. This is ...for the whole community to share in song, dance and fun. Today we went to the market with Moon to buy treats and juice for Thursday.
All the community and surrounding area are welcome to attend. Currently about 300 people are coming.
Tomorrow myself and a few others will start cleanning the village area where a small project is going to start. Photos and update of the project to come soon. I will share the circus photos and details after Thursday.
So much is happening here with the community and how the children are becoming empowered and coming into their own as individuals with self confidence.
Amazing to see the progress. 💚💜💛
Eyes to Burma and the community are as hard at work as ever. The community held their election for headman and deputies this week. This video from December 15, 2016, shows an area of the community that ETB has been helping with water assistance recently. In 2016 we made major headway with projects for water, electricity, education, and more, which you can read about in our milestones newsletter (see link below). We're looking ahead to another exciting year with challenges and achievements to work through together. Thank you to all of our donors, friends, and other supporters. Happy New Year!
Giving Tuesday 2016: Support direct aid organizations this Giving Tuesday so your donations have direct impact.
When you donate to Eyes to Burma, 100% of donations go to ETB's community-building and -supporting projects like education sponsorship, access to potable water and electricity, transportation to medical facilities, and emergency assistance.
View our online store where you can fund particular projects or sign up to be a sustaining monthly donor....
We are very pleased with our fundraising results so far this year. Thank you to everyone who has helped with our projects in Thailand and fundraising efforts around the world. Learn more in our newsletter below: http://eepurl.com/cjSeGb
Eyes to Burma founder Fred Stockwell is on his way back to the community in Mae Sot after a whirlwind 10 days in Oregon and California, connecting with supporters and raising donations for the year ahead. ETB volunteers are in the process of thanking all of our generous donors and supporters and will be sharing the fundraising results in the coming days. Thank you everyone for your kindness and generosity. Here's to another year of successes, overcoming challenges, and progress.
Join Eyes to Burma founder Fred Stockwell in San Francisco, Friday, September 23, starting at 6 pm at Dubbelju Motorcycle Rentals, 274 Shotwell Street. Fred will talk and share a slideshow of ETB projects at a meet and greet organized and sponsored by Dubbelju Motorcycle Rentals and Himalayan Roadrunners Motorcycle Tours via their Ride High Foundation. Himalayan Roadrunners members visit the community in Mae Sot and see ETB projects first-hand regularly.
See you at noon today at the Unitarian Center. We look forward to sharing ETB community news, including breakthrough changes in electricity, water, and education, and welcoming your questions.
To LOVEBITE: We can't get enough of you! Thank you for such an incredible show. Your songs were sweet, soulful, funky, and swept us all up. Music and love connect us all. Thank you for your sponsorship and sharing your art with us. We'll be sure to share the songs with the community in Mae Sot. Thank you to Michael at GrassRoots Sound and also to our event guests and volunteers. We're all in this together and your support means so much.
Join us tonight and make a world of difference for a whole community! Enjoy wine, treats, great music, and dancing (or relaxing) for a fantastic cause. Inger Nova Jorgensen and Jeff Pevar will perform original music with an opening duet, then their band LOVEBITE will play along with special musical guests.
Eyes to Burma founder Fred Stockwell is here! See you at the benefit concert with LOVEBITE at the Unitarian Center on Thursday, 9/15, from 7-9. Thank you again to Jeff Pevar, Inger Nova Jorgensen, LOVEBITE, Grassroots Music, and ETB board members for sponsoring!
Get your tickets at Hilltop Music, Music Coop, or online today: http://eyestoburmagiving.org/benefit-concert/
Eyes to Burma founder Fred Stockwell arrives in Ashland next week. He and ETB's local volunteers are all looking forward to connecting with everyone at LOVEBITE's benefit concert at the Unitarian Center, Thursday, 9/15, from 7-9. Much gratitude to Jeff Pevar, Inger Nova Jorgensen, LOVEBITE, Grassroots Music, and ETB board members for sponsoring this fabulous event!
Get your tickets at Hilltop Music, Music Coop, or online today: http://eyestoburmagiving.org/benefit-concert/
SEPT 15 @The Unitarian Center: We are honored to be a part of helping these children & families directly who live & work on the border of Thailand & Burma on a ...garbage dump site.
We are humbled by the work of prior Ashland resident Fred Stockwell, who has given the last 10 years of his life to this cause. Fred lives next to the site and provides a vast amount of care for these families (he even drives all the kids to school every single morning!). A majority of the support for these people comes from the generosity of Ashland residents.
Please join us Thursday for a special concert at the Unitarian Center to raise funds to assist Fred and ETB in helping these people with basic human needs, and at a chance at a future. Fred will also be at the Unitarian Center to share his experiences & answer questions the following Sunday.
"Every home - and we’re talking some 100+ homes scattered all over the dump - now have access to electricity. For this community they cannot stop smiling – water on tap and now electricity! It’s interesting talking to them. There has always been a sense of pride in this community, they’ve always wanted a ‘hand up’ not a ‘hand out’, but there is now something more.
This is their community, their home, their lives; and they are investing themselves more and more into it." - Suz..., Aussie Friends of Eyes to Burma
Read our latest newsletter here:
From Aussie Friends of ETB: As we all know, life on a rubbish dump isn’t how many people would choose to live, but that is the reality here in Mae Sot. That being said, things have come such a long way that we now have lots of really good things happening. The future is looking bright and it is thanks to you all and the wider ETB community that we are now able to focus our attention on new programs.
One of those is education. Moving forward, this is definitely the priority for ETB. Click below to read Aussie Friends' full message after their visit to Mae Sot this month.
Aussie Friends. As we all know, life on a rubbish dump isn’t how many people would choose to live, but that is the reality here in Mae Sot. That being said, thi...ngs have come such a long way that we now have lots of really good things happening. The future is looking bright and it is thanks to you all and the wider ETB community that we are now able to focus our attention on new programs.
One of those is education. Moving forward this is definitely the priority for ETB and we are very much focused on putting as many children through school as possible to break the cycle of poverty. We currently have 24, but would love to provide an education to all of the children who wish to learn – it just comes down to funds. It takes a financial commitment of around US$1,000 per child per year to provide an ongoing education (including all the additional elements such as regulation haircuts, transport, replacement clothing, school outings, lunches etc). From ETB’s perspective, to tell a child they are going to school this year, but maybe not next year isn’t an option. It’s just too devastating for them. So at this point in time, we must focus on the kids we currently have in school, see their education through, and ensure that they receive every opportunity to succeed.
That being said, those kids who don’t have the opportunity to attend school in the local community, can take up the opportunity to attend weekend classes held on site. There are classes in various subjects, such as English, Maths, Music and Computers. These classes are usually attended by our current students as well as a number of other children who want to get ahead.
Talking to the kids you realise just how much they love to learn. A number of them sat exams during our visit and all of them scored well above average – many only two or three points shy of a perfect score. These kids are very competitive and are always trying to outdo each other, and they’re always asking questions. Many of our students also teach their families English, so we’re now able to communicate much better with many of the younger kids as well as their parents. This wasn’t something that happened overnight, but it’s opening up a whole new world.
It was super exciting to learn that 7 of our female students are now part of the CDC school football team. Every week they train with their fellow team mates and every Saturday they play competitively. Geoff and I had a fantastic time watching them play – they really are quite good (and way more coordinated than I am!). The day we were there unfortunately they lost 2-1, but they had a ball. The smiles on their faces said it all, and they’ve really forged strong friendships outside of the dump. To watch them interact with others makes us smile – this would not have happened a couple of years ago. For the AFOETB Donors, I’ll upload the video we shot of the goal they scored separately.
From a job perspective, teaching and translation roles are rating high on their ‘when I leave school’ list, as well as fashion, mechanics, computers and cooking. One student mentioned that he’s researching which jobs will bring about the best income (so he can help his family) and will base his studies around that.
It really is difficult to put into words just how far these kids have come. A few years ago, their prospects were grim. Picking rubbish on a dump site or, if they were lucky, getting a job on the garbage trucks was the best they could probably hope for. Now, they can see a whole new future ahead of them. It is inspirational and it’s because ETB is here to help them. We don’t do it for them, we just pave the way. This community is taking the reins and making the most of the opportunity, and we cannot wait to see the end result.