Aid Myanmar-A vision of compassion

~These are the children of Myanmar~

Children of Myanmar*There are 18 children residing in a small orphanage in Myanmar, South East Asia. The Dalla Township in Myanmar has about 100,000 people, one hospital and only 20 beds. There is an ongoing water crisis in this part of the world and when I heard what was happening to aid in this situation, I was overwhelmed with admiration and love.

Stephen Fortner founded The Aid Myanmar Society in the summer of 2012 after visiting the area with his lovely wife Marian earlier that year. They discovered the orphanage which is across the river from Yangon, Myanmar during their trip. This homestead is administered by Pastor Joshua and his wife Ruth who care for these young children.

The following year, in 2013, Stephen and Marian returned to the small village. With them, they brought ‘Sawyer’ water filtration kits to the orphanage along with a promise to continue their efforts in helping supply food, water, housing, education and more for these wonderful children.

“…they had decided to make a commitment to support the Hope Centre for Child Development by creating this B.C. registered non-profit society.”

Stephen and Marian

“Ultimately, Aid Myanmar will develop a social enterprise for the local orphanage to become self-sufficient.”-

I met Stephen while working at a health clinic, and got to know him through his fascinating travel stories and chatting about his and Marian’s charitable efforts to Myanmar. Once I learned about their passionate vision to help these people, I just had to get involved. All it takes is a few monthly donors to change the lives of these children for the better. A little goes a long way and with the joint efforts of a handful of people, Aid Myanmar has managed to raise enough money to renovate the orphanage, bring more water filters to the village and support the community in many ways. I keep in contact with both Stephen and Marian through Facebook and Hotmail, and enjoy reading their updates about the orphanage. It is so incredible to see such passion and drive to help the less fortunate.

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The entire population suffers from this lack of water, and every single day the people of the village have to line up for water with their buckets at the local reservoir, the only source for clean drinking water.




In a recent article written in The Washington Post, the water crisis is explained in great detail, which has really opened my eyes to how much devastation this causes:

Stephen and Marian are applying for charitable status with CRA. They are dedicated to fundraising and continue to spread this message through the Aid Myanmar website and on Facebook as well :

After returning home from their latest trip to Myanmar in February, I was so touched to receive a beautiful hand-made ‘Chin Traditional’ handbag, delivered to my 604054_10153966569990444_942937841_noffice by Stephen as a gift for my donations. To come from a place where most of the people practically have nothing, this gift filled my heart with so much love and joy ❤ Along with a thank you card from Pastor Joshua and the children, every donor received their own original handbag as well 🙂 What a beautiful gesture.

My hope in writing this article, is to spread this message of love and compassion. I hope I can raise awareness for this amazing cause and get more people involved. This story deserves to be shared and thanks to Stephen and Marian, the children of Myanmar have a brighter future ❤ Paying it forward and changing the world, one child at a time.

❤ Aid Myanmar ❤






Why save the Sea Turtles?

Did you know that the Leatherback Sea Turtles are the largest turtles in the world? turtle

The heaviest one recorded was over 2,000 lbs. That’s incredible!!

Last year I decided to join GoVoluntouring so I could experience my first conservation project and pay it forward to those endangered animals in need. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.

“GoVoluntouring is the leading full-service specialist for both volunteering and applied learning programs around the world.”

So, why should we save the sea turtles? A lot of people ask me why I chose turtles in particular. Why is a sea turtle so important?

Well, why is any animal important?

When I was looking for the perfect project I could really focus on I had a hard time choosing. There is no one animal more important than another. Every living thing on this planet is fundamental to our survival. If I could, I would volunteer all around the world helping as many animals as possible.

So why don’t I? Money. It’s the one excuse and roadblock I always run into. Stupid money.

Since I can’t afford to travel the world and volunteer everywhere… I chose an animal I’ve always loved. Turtles 🙂 That’s when I started my “Save the Sea Turtles” campaign and began fundraising.

When I was a little girl I had a pet turtle named Beverly. Why did I name her Beverly? I have no idea. I have an Aunty named Beverly… but I don’t think that had anything to do with it. I thought of my pet turtle Beverly when I decided to join a sea turtle conservation in Costa Rica.

I’ve learned only 1-2 turtles make it to sea after hatching. That usually means a single survivor in a nest full of hundreds of babies. Poaching, drag net fishing or just the loss of habitat will prove fatal for most of the baby turtles. There are a lot of forces working against them.


Why wouldn’t I want to save this little guy? He’s so cute!

The project is located in the north of the Caribbean province Limon. The beach is part of the 50km coastline stretching between Tortuguero National Park and the port of Limon, one of the biggest ports of Costa Rica. This beach is extremely important for the Leatherback and Green Sea Turtles. It is an essential nesting ground for them and sometimes it’s also visited by Hawksbill Sea Turtles, which are very rare. This area is very remote and uninhabited, other than the volunteers at the conservation. 

The cost for the conservation is $600/per week and that includes room and board the entire time you are there. The staff provides 3 meals a day and a clean place to sleep. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of the quarters and all the tools necessary for turtle research. In an email I received from my program co-ordinator, she told me this:

“Volunteer work includes assisting the staff with data collection, egg protection of the sea turtles and rescue and rehabilitation duties. It involves night patrols and hatchery shifts as well as daytime work like beach cleanup or construction of the hatcheries.”

Awesome right!? 

I’ve been fundraising for a whole year by posting facebook updates, selling my stuff, having sidewalk sale fundraisers and making jewelry. So far I’ve raised $1400 towards the project, which is a lot less than I thought I’d have by now. But, unfortunately a lot of people can’t get involved due to finances. Most people don’t even have $1 to spare… which is strange because they do seem to have money for other things… just not a dollar for a turtle. A good friend of mine even said that my fundraiser looked like I was just trying to get others to fund a vacation. Which kind of hurt but, I get it. That wasn’t my intention. And if you know me, you know I am not the kind of person to ever have those intentions. I truly want to help endangered animals.

To those people who have supported my cause and actually care enough just to wish me good luck … I am forever grateful. I am so lucky to have those people in my life who care about me. So I will keep on fundraising until I reach my goal and then go save some turtles!There’s a lot of controversy when it comes to volunteering which I’ve obviously learned about since starting my campaign… and you can read about it here:

and here:   and a ton of other articles out there.

I share this with you because I want to know what the general consensus is. What do YOU think about conservation? Is this something we can do to change the world?

I personally think conservation is important. So are a lot of other projects out there including feeding the hungry, standing up for women’s rights or even children’s education programs.

My future goals definitely include working as a full time volunteer and humanitarian. It’s what I want to write about. I would love more than anything to be a travel writer and use conservation efforts as my main focus. And so, this is all part of my journey to becoming a successful writer. I want my work to have purpose. To reach more and more people until we see a drastic change. So surely, you can count on hearing about the trip down to Costa Rica next year and about those magnificent turtles.

There are so many sea turtle conservations other than the one I’m getting involved in. If it’s something you’re interested in check out the GoVoluntouring website and browse through the wonderful campaigns. There are many opportunities to give back to the world or even support someone who has a passion for volunteering. You can also volunteer here:

OR here:

OR here:

I could go on and on…

~Thursday Thoughts: What if we all did our part?~

I hesitated writing this post on the off-chance I might sound too self-righteous or something… but then I wrote it anyways!

~There are thousands and thousands of organizations out there trying to better our planet. We see wildlife conservation, child sponsorship, local volunteer projects and so on. Yet, our world as we know it is crumbling before we very eyes. Why?

Is it our Governments and politicians? images

Is it Monsanto?


Is it criminals and liars?

Or is it us?

What if we could live in a world without war or famine? What if we could all just throw away our materialistic behaviour and start playing a role… even just a small part in our uprising?

What if we ALL did our part?

I wrote a post at the beginning of the year called “T’s top 10 must-do’s for the new year 2014”

stating some of the projects I’ve decided to get involved with and some other self-love type activities we can all do to heighten our senses and think about ourselves on another level. I thought I could encourage people to get up and do something!

It only got 1 “like” and none of my Facebook friends even read it. Was I being to presumptuous to think people would care or even take my suggestions seriously? Did I sound too cocky?cocky


I have no idea. And I still don’t really know how to get more people on board to better our planet.

So here I sit. Writing my heart out each and every week… posting on my Facebook, linking my blog to my Twitter account hoping that somewhere out there someone might take a look at my message and say “That girl is right! I need to make a difference somehow!!”


But alas, my journey seems to be one of my very own and I probably sound like I think am better than other people or even arrogant at times. Which I am not. I am no better than anyone else trying to make a change… trying to get more people involved. Why don’t others see this and get involved?

I keep thinking back to my “Save the Sea Turtles” campaign. My close friend literally told me that it looked like I was just taking people’s money to go on a vacation. How could something so good look so bad? How many other people look at me and think that? Do I sound like I am just toot’n my own horn here??

imagesS5JDATI3I tested my Facebook feed one week and posted a few pictures. One of my new haircut and a post about “no poo” which is removing all chemicals from my hair and everyday life in general. Then I posted about a new job opportunity. Then I posted a heart-felt message about fundraising and child sponsorship seeking support from my friends and family.

Well guess which posts got the most “likes” and guess which one was completely ignored.

I guess the whole “Hey I’m doing this great thing and you should do some great things too” approach is not working 😦

So, what do we do? Any suggestions?

And here’s to the people who dedicate their lives to World Aid. They are the real heroes on this planet ❤ I hope to make this my life sooner rather than later so I can really show people what we are ALL capable of 🙂

Happy writing!