ISY Service Learning

An Act of Compassion at ISY

Compassion is a topic frequently discussed at ISY, as it lies at the heart of our mission. Compassion is defined as the “will and understanding to care about, respect, and value the identity, culture, perspective, and experiences of others, with the intention of making a positive difference in their lives and the world.”

At ISY, compassion is not just a concept; it’s an action. This week, our students demonstrated their commitment to compassion in a significant manner. They volunteered, organized events, and provided support to those in need, showing a strong desire to make a positive impact on individuals facing hardship.

Early in the week, we learned about severe flooding that had devastating effects on our Chinthe Fund service learning partners: The Care to the Least Center (CLC) orphanage, Kalihtaw School, and the Yangon Animal Shelter. While Kalihtaw School itself remained mostly unharmed, 55 families, including 21 Kalihtaw school student families, experienced significant hardship, with damaged homes and acute shortages of essentials like food and clean water. At CLC, the children had to evacuate due to major flooding, and at the Yangon Animal Shelter (YAS), 30 dogs went missing, and resources like food and water were urgently needed as many of their supplies were ruined due to the flooding.

ISY staff reached out to CLC, Kalihtaw School, and YAS to understand their immediate needs. Recognizing the devastation and the urgency of these needs, the Chinthe Fund service learning groups met with Mr. Sturmey, our service learning coordinator. In just over an hour, they developed and put into action a detailed plan to inform the entire ISY community and collect and distribute what was immediately required by these organizations. By Wednesday, all students were informed of the situation and the urgent needs, and by Thursday morning, money and supplies were being donated.

On Friday, the momentum continued with additional donations of essential items and money. Generous contributions were made by our local community members. Yum Yum donated packages of noodles, Shangyi contributed packs of pickled tea leaves, and City Mart offered discounts on purchased items. Large donations of dog food and rice were delivered to our premises.

As donations accumulated on the teak steps, the Middle School Student Council was busy organizing a Movie Night, with all proceeds from tickets and snacks going to the Chinthe Fund. A bake sale and a popcorn stand were arranged during the afternoon’s volleyball games to boost financial support.

On Friday after school, ISY students and staff volunteered to organize and package essential items in preparation for distribution to CLC, the Kalihtaw families, and YAS. By Saturday afternoon, all the essential items had been distributed to CLC, the Kalihtaw school, and YAS.

Our support for CLC, Kalihtaw School, and YAS extends beyond this week, but the urgency of this situation prompted immediate action. We are proud of our community’s response. Mr. Sturmey and the Chinthe Fund service learning group quickly informed the community, who responded with generous donations to assist CLC, Kalihtaw, and YAS during this disaster.