Yangon, Myanmar is a very poor city. Forty percent of the population lives in extreme poverty. Proper sanitation does not exist for many of the population and hazardous living conditions abound, leaving many of its poorer citizens vulnerable to disease. Homes are not built well, and many families are left open to the elements. The typical home is a bamboo shack built on stilts due to flooding from the volatile river nearby. Most families cannot care for their children. A lot of these children end up in an orphanage or on the streets.
Medical care is another main concern for the children entering the orphanage who may have to be quarantined while being treated as well as day to day care for other health issues ranging from colds, coughs, and flu to those requiring major surgery such as appendicitis.
Besides orphaned children, one of the most impoverished groups in Yangon are the widows. Women do not have the opportunity that men do. Many widows are left without aid or any means to earn an income for themselves. But in this scenario of daily struggle and survival lies a bright promise, a hope, and a beautiful ray of God's love for many - the Mustard Seed Orphanage.