A Buddhist monk noticed the large number of children living in squalid conditions, some without parents, most not receiving any education, in an area north of Kawkareik. He was the Abbot at the Buddhist monastery in Kawpan Lan village. His sister was a Buddhist nun in Kawpan Lan (KPL). Their family had some land in the village. The Abbot and his nun sister found some use for it.
The family donated the land to be the site of a Monastic Education Centre. The Abbot began the Education Centre in 2008. Children from Kawpan Lan and surrounding villages could come to the Centre for a safe, free education. Other children were brought from distant villages to the new school to live there and get an education. For the children who were orphans, the school became their permanent home. All children received a free education, and boarding students lived there at no cost to them.
But, they all had responsibilities, duties, chores, and collectively helped the school function effectively.
Freedom. Caring. Sharing.
The Buddhist Abbot is the head of the Education Centre. As such, he is referred to as “SAYATHAW” which means (religious) “Father” (as in Christian Priest), or “Big Teacher”, or “Head Monk”. He spends much of his time travelling the countryside to gather support for the Education Centre, collecting funds, getting large donations of food, clothes and other necessities.