News / Asia

Burma Bakehouse Helps Disadvantaged Women

Burma Bakehouse Helps Disadvantaged Womeni
X
March 05, 2013 4:19 PM
A group of bakers in Burma's former capital, Rangoon, is seeking to help disadvantaged women with training that goes beyond making bread and pastries. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Rangoon that the Yangon Bakehouse also provides life-skills classes to place Burmese women in the growing hospitality industry.

Burma Bakehouse Helps Disadvantaged Women

Daniel Schearf
— A group of bakers in Burma's former capital, Rangoon, is seeking to help disadvantaged women with training that goes beyond making bread and pastries. The Yangon Bakehouse also provides life-skills classes to place Burmese women in the growing hospitality industry.

Thirty-nine-year-old Ma Moe Nge is learning to bake and said that when her nine-month apprenticeship is over she wants to start her own bakery.

"Before, I only saw this kind of food, but I didn’t know how to make it. Now, I've even surprised myself that I can make this kind of food. I am interested in it and I also feel proud of myself," she said.

She is one of several Burmese women training with Yangon Bakehouse, a social enterprise started by four female friends, three foreigners and one Burma national, to help other women in need.

Building skills

Co-founder American Heatherly Bucher said the training and modest wage helps many of the women get out of debt, rebuilds their dignity, and gives them hope.

"The bakehouse is a livelihood program training disadvantaged Myanmar [Burmese] women in both livelihood skills, culinary skills, front of house, hospitality and in life skills.  So, giving them skills from, you know, budgeting their personal finances to reproductive health to good nutrition to English class," said Bucher.

Co-founder Phyu Phyu Tin manages a local restaurant and hopes her experience can make the bakehouse more sustainable.

"It's always in my mind like I want to help our people. And, the main thing is, even like expatriates, people from outside, want to help our people. So, I want to try as much as I can to help them make it happen," she said.

Bucher said they select women who are unable to earn a living for their families and, after training, hope to place them in Burma's growing hospitality industry or as domestic workers.

Baking and rising

Their fundraising has been so successful they plan to move the Bakehouse from its temporary location to its own shopfront by the end of March.

"We know business and we know food and we know women. And so we're trying to help some of the most disadvantaged women here from their 20s to 40s that kind of missed those opportunities to develop life skills and job skills and need a chance to not only support their families, but to participate in the economy. You know, that's growing," said Bucher.

For now, the Yangon Bakehouse sells its goods through catered and community events where they receive strong support.

This year's fun fair at the International School of Myanmar saw all entrance fees donated to the bakehouse.

Though the goal is to help them find jobs, Bucher said they hope some of the women will stay on to train the next group of apprentices.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid