Oct 21 7 Comments

Go fishing and you die

With some of the beautiful Rohingya children. This photo was taken by Josh Rogers, a man I met in Sittwe who ended up buying tarps for some of the families without shelter.

With some of the beautiful Rohingya children. This photo was taken by Josh Rogers, a man I met in Sittwe who ended up buying tarps for some of the families without shelter.

I received an email that I have been thinking about ever since I got it a couple of days ago.

It was from my friend who lives in Western Burma. In Rakhine state. She and her family belong to the Rohingya people group, and along with more than 100,000 people, she has been forced to leave her village to live in a crowded and quite miserable refugee camp. All her belongings were stolen or destroyed. Many of her neighbors were killed. I have sat with her as she cried about her losses, and the lack of hope she has for her future.

This is what she wrote:

Dear Oddny,

Thank you very much for your remembrance. I am very glad to receive
your email. I am sorry for late reply. As I have to hide my laptop, I
can use internet only once a while. I hope you understand this.
We are fine. The situation here doesn’t improve much. Except from
moving some people from tents or makeshift huts to temporary shelters
(long bamboo houses), the situation remain the same. Unregistered IDPs
still don’t get ration. There is no proper education for children yet.
Referral to Sittwe hospital is still not safe.  Fishermen from local
villages are being killed in river whenever they try to go out of
their village for fishing.

Five fishermen from …… village, were
attacked by rakhines in the river on 10th September, 2013. One out of
five survived, the rest four were killed.

There are even more police presence in the camps now. They are
planning to have a police station in every camp. So we have to be very
careful all the time.

As the situation doesn’t improve and it is dangerous for us. Please pray for us.

Thank you very much again for your love and remembrance, Please give
my regards to your family.

I have been feeling slightly underprivileged for a while. I don’t have all the money and stuff that others have. I have not had time to do my workouts. I have not had the time to clean the house properly. I have not gotten warm shoes for the winter. My old ones are just ugly.

I am embarrassed to admit that these issues have even been issues for me after reading what my friend wrote. She cannot move outside an barb-wired enclosure. She cannot get a job. She watches her people every day beg for food. She is not safe. She doesn’t know how she and her family are going to make it. She is unwanted by a whole nation. She has not even gotten a citizenship although her family has lived in Burma for many generations.

I just wanted to share this with you so you can pray and keep speaking about the Rohingya. I also would like to ask you to consider giving some money to help them. Partners does so much, and we are about the only ones. There is a need for everything, from food to nurses. You can give HERE

Perhaps we can make my friend’s life a little easier by showing love and concern. Perhaps it can also make us forget about ourselves.




  • stevegumaer says:

    Thanks for the powerful reminder to keep our trials in perspective and use what freedom we have to help others gain theirs.

  • Barbara says:

    Thank you for this post and for all the posts that you put out for us. I read them all and they are always so thought-provoking and most always give me a needed “gentle thump on the head.” Yes, we do have so much and yet we complain, mumble and wonder “Why me?” And then, and then……… I read something written by you and it ALWAYS causes me to take another look, have another perspective. Thank you for being out there and thank you for writing your blog.

  • Russ says:

    Thanks for the good “life in persspective” reminder Oddny!

  • Paul & Kirsten Baynham says:

    Dear Oddny, We absolutely LOVE that photo of you with the precious Rohingha children!
    The photo speaks a thousand words………
    Yes, we are praying and giving towards the Rohingha situation, and also passing the word.
    Paul is itching to get over there to help medically…….hopefully next year!
    We are behind you and Steve, and PARTNERS!
    Please keep in touch!
    Under His wings, kirsten & paul

  • Paul & Kirsten Baynham says:

    We LOVE this photo of you and the precious children, Oddny!! We are behind you in prayers and giving…..Paul is itching to get back over there to help out medically with the Rohingya.
    Hopefully this time next year! We just found out we’re going to be grandparents in early APRIL!! God is so good…….he sees our hearts for these people the world has forgotten!
    But HE loves them so much!! Under His wings, kirsten & paul