My name is K Zin. I lived in Myanmar until I was sixteen years old. Back in Myanmar, having an economically disadvantage background, I was the victim of discrimination at school. It is a common practice for students to take extra tutoring whether they study in a low-cost government school or an elite private school.
Unemployment is prevalent in Myanmar, and even high school and university graduates remain unemployed. With meager income, many parents cannot afford to provide good education to their children. Due to our difficult financial situation, my family moved to Mae Sot on the Thai-Burma border in 2008. Aware of the financial challenges facing my family, I decided to work instead of continuing with my high school education.
After working for some time, I heard about a migrant school called Children’s Development Centre (CDC), which provides education and accommodation to migrant people in Mae Sot.
With financial support from CDC, I was able continue my high school education. During my time in Mae Sot, I participated in various community activities such as joining weekly prayer ceremonies for victims of Cyclone Nargis and the Saffron Revolution, and working with the Burmese Migrant Teachers’ Association.
After finishing high school, I was able to continue my university education and do international development studies with financial support from CDC and Mae Tao Clinic. While studying at the university, I have been involved in a number of health projects and other activities such as a school playground renovation project and community projects in Thai villages.
I am in now in my second year of school. In addition to receiving financial assistance from CDC and Mae Tao Clinic, I have been working as a translator and interpreter during my free time to support myself financially. I would like to complete this program successfully since I would like to learn more about community development activities and the relationships among different countries.
About K Zin
- Age: 25
- Ethnicity: Karen
- Country: Myanmar
School & Program
- Mae Fah Luang University
- Bachelor’s, International Development
- 4th Year in Program
Goals & Dreams
- Work as a social worker in migrant areas
- Become an ambassador
- Travel to Korea
- Loan Amount: $4,900
- Amount Left To Fund: $4,150
- Contract Duration: 12 years
- Status: In School
K Zin, in her own words
Currently, I am learning about community development, International development, and migrant people in different places. Since I am a migrant myself, I would like to help other migrants after earning my degree. In order to help the migrant community effectively, I need to learn more about both legal and illegal immigration in different parts of the world.
After graduation, I would like to serve migrant communities on the Thai-Burma border. I am indebted to CDC and Mae Tao Clinic for their continuous support of my education, and I would like to repay their generosity by joining them in serving the migrant community. Migrant people face social, health and educational challenges. As a result of various factors ranging from political instability to unemployment in their own countries, people from different social and ethnic backgrounds leave home in order to seek better life opportunities. However, they often end up facing similar problems in their new countries. I am excited to use my knowledge and skills to help them navigate these challenges.
Written by K Zin with editing assistance from Zomia’s volunteer editors.
“I didn’t want to stop my education, but my parents couldn’t afford to support me and sent me to Mae Sot to work. I was so helpless that I had to work even before finishing high school. … Later, I got my courage back and tried even harder. I don’t want to go back to being helpless.”