BWU: Office, Safe House, Home

It’s high time that we filled you all in on our living situation and the goings on at the BWU office. The BWU compound (as we affectionately like to call it), consists of a house (three bedrooms, one air conditioned office, dining room, kitchen, bathroom) and a library (shelves and shelves of books!) Three of the staff members live in the house in one of the bedrooms: Mu Sell, Cho Thae, and Ei Ei Nin (the current BWU intern), the three of us live in another bedroom, and the third bedroom is empty. In the past these rooms have served as a safe house for Burmese women who are victims of domestic violence but unfortunately, due to a lack of funding, BWU has stopped advertising those services. We checked with the staff (multiple times) to make sure we wouldn’t be taking a bedroom away from anyone.

Now for the grand tour!

Looking at the library from the front porch of the house

Our bedroom (our favorite features are the mosquito nets and the fan)

The kitchen

Where we eat

The bathroom (toilet and shower)

The outdoor shower (this is our favorite)

Even though we haven’t even been living here a week, we are already realizing what an incredible opportunity we have to live, eat, and work with these women on a daily basis. Their friendship and guidance have been invaluable, we are so grateful!

peace & love,

Katie, Abbey, and Colleen

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3 thoughts on “BWU: Office, Safe House, Home

  1. Rachel says:

    Ahh you guys! This is so incredibly exciting! I feel like I’m learning so much more about BWU already. In one of Abbey’s emails, she mentioned we could ask you guys questions about BWU’s operations (or really anything) and I was wondering if you could inquire more about their inability to fund a safe house currently. Is this something they would be interested in? It might be cool if we started allocating some of our fundraising every year for a larger project to build them a new safe house, but only if they would like one. Just a thought about something you guys could ask 🙂 Be safe and learn lots!
    Love,
    Rachel

    • Rachel! I’m so happy you’re reading our blog and excited because we are beyond excited about how awesome BWU is. Definitely keep asking questions!

      About the safe house: you are exactly on the same train of thought that we are. The safe house is definitely something needed in the community where there is a lot of crime against women (domestic violence and random violence). The BWU office has two extra rooms to accommodate guests (though we are taking up one right now). Even though they have had to stop actively recruiting women to use the safe house, women still know that this is a safe place, and we’ve already had 2 women come to stay here overnight or for a few days. For one woman, she lives in the factory where she works and needed a place to sleep on her one day off for the month. Women are still never turned away, but they have to use extra funds left over from other projects to afford it. The point is, they do need and want a safe house, and we were hoping to talk to the regional director about what the budget for running a safe house would look like. For the short term, helping with the running budget would be a great way to help, and I will ask what they think about a long term goal of building a separate space for it.

      Thanks for the great idea!! We’ll keep you updated!–

      Abbey

  2. Tim says:

    Thanks for the tour

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