The children's home in Burma was the second major project that HopeAsia undertook.
In 2012 we visited a pastor who oversees a network of churches that spreads throughout Myanmar and has been asked on numerous occasions to care for children who have either been orphaned or where one parent has died and the surviving parent has been unable to cope. There were about 30 children living in bamboo shacks and sleeping on slatted wood platforms over the bare earth. When the rainy season comes the area becomes flooded and the floodwaters stop just a few inches below the floor. Given that there are no proper sewage systems in the area you can only imagine what the water was like.
We started to discuss the possibilities of constructing a proper building on the site. By the following spring the building was complete and the excited children moved in.Their lives have been utterly transformed; they now each have their own bed whereas before they slept like sardines on the floor. Each bed has a mosquito net to protect children from malaria. There is also a classroom, a kitchen and a dining hall. There are now about 40 youngsters in the home. We have also bought a minibus to get the children to and from school which was a particular problem in the rainy season.
The next stage was to complete the site by building a wall to keep wild animals, including dogs that roam the area, away from the children. This also added security to the children's home by reducing the risk of thefts.
In September 2015 we started work on an education block at the children's home, the Ben White Education Centre, named after one of our founding trustees. As well as giving extra educational opportunities for the youngsters that stay at Hosanna we are also able to run classes in computing, needle craft and music to other children in the neighbourhood.
The children are doing fantastically well and in June 2020 every single one of them passed their end-of-year exams and progressed to the next grade. It was the first time this was achieved and is particularly notable as most of the children had very little early years education.