Poets gather K14m for flood victims and measles patients
THE Myanmar Poets Union raised more than K14 million for flood victims and measles patients over a oneweek period by selling hand-written poems and drawings by Myanmar artists, said Ma Eain Dra, who is charge of the organisation’s finances.
On August 10, artists took to Facebook, advertising their poetry, writing or paintings for sale to benefit flood victims in Bago Region and those who have contracted measles in the Naga Self-Administered Zone.
“We asked famous artists to sell their paintings and donate the proceeds,” said Ma Eain Dra.
On August 14 the union hosted a charity event at Yangon’s Taw Win Centre during which artists sold their art and requested donations. About half the donated money was raised at that event, according Myanmar Poets Union secretary Ko Wayy Khaung.
“I think those who bought our art and contributed are art lovers, philanthropists or maybe both,” he said.
Poet Yoe Myay raised nearly K1 million through the sale of just four poems.
“Although I did not really write the poems to make money, I consider the money earned from these poems to be very pure,” he said. “I am really glad to be able to contribute to the flood victims by using my poems.”
The donated money will provide rice packs, oil bottles and purified drinking water to 12 villages and eight monasteries in Monyo township in Bago Region. The remainder will go to Sagaing Region’s Naga area, which has suffered a measles outbreak, said Ma Eain Dra.
“Social media like Facebook is very effective in fostering communication so we took advantage of this to do a good deed,” she said. “As poets, we are concerned with every problem facing the country so we did what we could.”
More than 470,000 people are suffering as the result of flooding across six regions and two states, according to an August 14 report from the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement. Many people, including children, have contracted measles since the middle of July.