Thabyay Education Network

Thabyay Education Network's mission is to educate, develop, inspire, connect, and empower individuals and organizations who are change-makers in Southeast Asia, with a primary focus on Myanmar. We seek to achieve this through knowledge creation, innovative learning, guided skills expansion and by forging connections to networks, information and opportunities. We are inspired to create far-reaching transformations for the people of Myanmar.
Jul 10, 2014

Ready for further studies

EPOP stundents sit the TOEFL ITP exam
EPOP stundents sit the TOEFL ITP exam

We at Thabyay Education Foundation would like to express our gratitude to those who have supported our Exam Preparation Outreach Program's (EPOP's) project, 'Help 200 students from Burma study for university' on GlobalGiving.

Year 2014 started in a very dynamical way. In March, we launched a new semester with 189 students from Myanmar, Thailand and Cambodia providing online academic English and exam preparation services to help civil society activists gain qualifications in order to support their work and pursue further studies.

Based on the progress of the students, EPOP had the chance to organize a Diagnostic Test for more than 100 students in order to track their development and to provide TOEFL ITP exam for students who reached their target scores. Despite the fact that we were in the middle of the semester, so fare 13 talented EPOP students got selected to sit the TOEFL ITP exam in order to apply for scholarship in universities abroad, like it happened with 18 EPOP students in 2013.

Students are busy now with the weekly assignments focusing on academic reading, writing, and listening skills. They will get feedback on a previous essay submission and submit a forum assignment.

On behalf of our students and the project team, I would like to thank everyone who supports us.

If you have any questions about the project, or about our work, please do get in touch with EPOP.


With our best wishes,

Matyas Benedek

May 13, 2014

Continuing Support for Burmese Students Abroad


We at Thabyay Education Network’s Arohana Scholarship Fund would like to extend our gratitude to all of you who have donated to our ‘University Scholarships for Students from Burma’ project on GlobalGiving. So far, we have raised a total of US$ 65,326 since the 1st September 2010 so we are well on our way to our target of US$ 99,000!

After the deduction of GlobalGiving administrative fees, we have now received a total of approximately US$ 62,455 in disbursements from GlobalGiving for the University Scholarships for Students from Burma project (funds are received over time in Thai Baht at different exchange rates, so USD figures can only be approximately calculated).

By the 6th January 2014, we had disbursed approximately US$ 60,959 to scholarship awards.


Selection and awards 

Since the last report on 6th January, the Arohana Scholarship Fund Committee has made two further awards totalling approximately US$ 1,485.

The total funds now raised by the ‘University Scholarships for Students from Burma’ project have therefore supported 51 awards enabling 40 students from marginalised communities across Burma to start or continue their Bachelor’s, Master’s or PhD studies at universities across Asia.

The recipients of these awards comprise 20 women and 20 men, ranging in age from 19 to 51 (average age of approximately 24, representing nine ethnic groups, studying 30 different majors at 17 different universities in 5 countries across Asia).

The award recipients were as follows:

Recipient 1:

Name: Naing Lin

Age: 23

Sex: Male

Ethnicity: Shan

Subject Studied: Social Science

University: Chiang Mai University, Thailand

Award Amount: US$ 750

Award Type: Partial scholarship


Recipient 2:

Name: Yamin

Age: 23

Sex: Female

Ethnicity: Burman

Subject Studied: Social Science

University: Chiang Mai University, Thailand

Award Amount: US$ 735

Award Type: Partial scholarship


N.B. Names of award recipients have been changed to protect their identities.


Future Plans

The Arohana Scohlarship Fund remains committed to helping key community actors gain access to appropriate higher education to optimize their positive impact in Burma in key sectors including health care, education, community development, rights and media. The Arohana Scholarship Fund is currently waiting for further funds to be received from GlobalGiving before the Selection Committee meets to decide on further scholarship awards.


Closing Statement

We hope that this report shows clearly the potential of these scholarship recipients to become catalysts for incremental social change in Burma, and that you can appreciate the direct link between quality higher education and grassroots development in communities in Burma. We also hope that it demonstrates that even the smallest contribution of US$ 10 can make a difference in terms of keeping a Burmese scholarship student in university education.

We would like to reiterate our gratitude to all of you who have helped raise funds for this project by making donations and spreading the word. We hope that this report will inspire you to continue to support us in the future. The beneficiaries of these awards, the students, have individually expressed their gratitude to us for the support they have received. We would like to pass on their thanks to you.

If you have any questions about this report, or about our work, please do get in touch.


With our best wishes,


Katie Hodges

Program Manager, Scholarships and Student Support

Thabyay Education Network




Apr 5, 2014

Strong Beginnings for Community Leaders of Burma

Khine & Ma utilizing computers for research
Khine & Ma utilizing computers for research

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to Thabyay Education Network in Myanmar.

Preparing future leaders of Burma, the Exam Preparation Outreach Program (EPOP) helps to get students of Burma ready to study at an international and university level. After spending some time visiting organizations throughout Burma such as Thabyay, the need for programs such as the EPOP is evident. The education system in the country focuses on memorization rather than on critical thinking and research. It is disheartening to pass schools and even homes where students are outside reciting over and over lines that they have to memorize for an upcoming exam. The deafening trance forced upon these students by the standard curriculum limits the people here from true development, thus limiting community advancement and reform.

Many of the students who complete the EPOP progress onto the full time residential Kant Kaw course in Yangon, which is taught in English, thus further preparing them for both 1)international university education abroad for some of the most passionate, underprivileged students and 2)a strong background in modern community development.

I met with some of the Thabyay staff at the Kant Kaw Education Center in Yangon. Organized and full of energy, the students of the Kant Kaw Education Center under the Thabyay Education Network are evidently excited about being a part of such a change-making and empowering organization. The Kant Kaw Education Center walls are lined with photos of smiling, enthusiastic, and motivated individuals and groups of students. As I study each photo, I feel excited about the future of these leaders. It is apparent that the focus here is both on individual, as well as group and community development.

Before meeting with the program leaders, I chatted with two young ladies, Khine and Ma, who were using the computer and printer resources. One of the girls, an almuni, still seems dedicated to the Foundation and active in its continued success as she utilized its resources and shared research tips with a current student. Their pride in being part of the inspiring and life-building knowledge gained through the programming beamed through their smiles when I asked, "How have you liked being a part of Thabyay?"

Classes weren't in session when I arrived at the center. The students had class in the morning, and in the afternoon they attended an Education Fair being held in Yangon. Providing opportunities inside and outside of the classroom for learning and growth is part of the culture Thabyay provides, and the EPOP is really a starting point for the students of Burma to develop their education and to help strengthen their communities.

As the Myanmar government is undergoing changes in many areas, including education reform, Thabyay desires to continue its reach, and seems to serve as an organization of strong respect and model-setting for alternative forms of education and leadership programming. The fully dedicated and enthusiastic staff wants nothing more than to be able to continue inspiring and opening opportunities for the youth of Myanmar. From all different ethnic and religious backgrounds, the students are learning to work together to build opportunities for themselves and others after many years of conflict and restriction. Not only are they learning to work together, but they're actually doing it! After my meeting at Thabyay, I met with three other alumni of the EPOP and Kant Kaw Education Center who are now teaching English at Parliament and really enjoy the opportunity to teach and help build their country together.


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