Western sensibilities often clash with the more reserved beliefs of South East Asia. However, this does not mean that the two cannot help each other. Today, we’re going to look at different ethical ways westerners can support Burma.
There is much struggle with the idea of ethically supporting Burma due to the fact that the government that is in charge has been accused of doing some pretty awful things. As a human traveler, many find themselves at odds whether or not they want to contribute toward the economy of a nation whose ideals clash with theirs.
If you are ever struggling with that, we suggest that you keep this in mind: think of the people. While you may abhor the idea of your money going to ward the economy of Burma, the people that you help will immediately feel the effects of your patronization. With that in mind, here are a few ways you can ethically support Burma:
Tourism has always been available regardless of which government or leader was in charge. Tourism helps a lot of local villages that are out of the way. The best sights, after all, take quite a trek towards areas that aren’t very populated.
So if you use your money and support local tourism in smaller villages, you’ll be able to truly help the people.
Burma is one of the nations that have a lot of public health issues. You can ethically help them by offering to volunteer your services in organizations like Red Cross. Depending on your profession, you can do even more toward ethically helping those in need.
While you are there in Burma, find yourself some local vendors. You can shy away from established businesses and patronize the homegrown vendors that are usually at public markets. You can do more toward helping someone who is selling their produce as far cheaper prices than supermarkets of established brands that offer the same produce but for steeper prices.
Supporting a nation’s people is always the ethical thing to do especially if just a dollar or two from you can make the difference between going hungry for the day and not. Being an ethical traveler is a pretty good activity that many more should indulge in. With that in mind, try to think of your stance as a westerner for a second.
Which way would you choose to ethically support Burma?