Children in South-East Myanmar can continue their learning, so that they can grow and flourish even in hard circumstances. Photo: Caritas Australia partner, Jesuit Refugee Services (JRS).


With your support, we help Myanmarese women facing poverty to develop new sources of income that bring improved wellbeing to their families and communities. We also help children in conflict situations in south-eastern Myanmar through education programs that enable them to continue their learning.

Our work in Myanmar

Emerging from decades of isolation, Myanmar has become one of the fastest growing economies in the region. However, it remains one of the poorest – placed 145 out of 189 countries in the 2019 UN Human Development Index. Numerous protracted emergencies in Myanmar have resulted in large numbers of internally displaced people, with host communities also in need of sustained humanitarian support (sources...HDR, World Bank).


Working with local communities in Myanmar since 2002


We support five programs through five local partners in Myanmar


Livelihoods, education, humanitarian response, protection and dignity

Program snapshot

Sustaining Education for Burmese Refugees in Mae Hong Son and Kayah State (JRS Program)

In Hakha state, Myanmar, programs like this are providing a new source of livelihood for vulnerable women. Photo: Caritas Australia.

Running since: 2016

Partner Agencies: Jesuit Refugee Services (JRS)

Aims: To provide Myanmar refugees in Thailand-Myanmar refugee camps with access to quality education which will assist them, if and when they are able to return to Myanmar

Who it is for: Myanmar refugee children in border camps, with a focus on ensuring that they can either continue their studies by entering mainstream education or access the skilled labour market


  • Over 3,000 students attended school in the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 Academic Years
  • 82% percent of students in the 2017-2018 Academic Year graduated to the next year
  • Ninety-eight percent also joined extracurricular curricular activities

Fact: Around 35% of the population living in conflict-affected areas do not receive an education, compared with 17% of the population living in areas not affected by conflict.

Along with your generous support, this program is supported by the Australian Government through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP). 

More Background

Poverty: Myanmar is one of Asia’s fastest growing economies. However, rampant inflation, rising commodity prices, conflict and widespread displacement of the population have resulted in lower living standards, particularly in rural areas. Over one third of the population lives in poverty.

Health: There is limited funding for basic healthcare and education. A lack of clean water contributes to the spread of waterborne diseases, such as dysentery. Average life expectancy is only 66 years and the child mortality rate is 49 deaths per 1,000 live births - over ten times higher than in Australia.

Natural Disasters: Myanmar is highly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is prone to cyclones, storms, floods, landslides, earthquakes, tsunamis, drought, fire and forest fires. Historical data shows that there have been medium to large-scale natural disasters every few years. The social and economic impact of such events tends to affect the most vulnerable groups in the population (sources: ABD, World Bank, Prevention Web).

You can help

With your kind support, we work to improve the lives of children living in refugee camps by providing access to quality education. We help them to build knowledge and skills that will enable them to enter mainstream schooling or the labour market, giving them hope for the future.

Become a regular giver

You can provide critical lifesaving aid and assistance to the communities in Myanmar devastated by earthquakes, cyclones, flooding or conflicts. Your donation means that our partners on the ground can respond quickly and efficiently when disasters strike.

Support emergencies now