Soe Meh is 21 years old. She was born in Ban Mai Nai Soi refugee camp in Thailand, where her parents fled to more than 20 years ago, running away from the violence that was blighting their village in Myanmar.
Soe Meh doesn’t know how life is outside a camp: she grew up, studied, made friends, fell in love, had a daughter… all within the camp where she was born. However, since 2015 she has been working with ACTED to help the members of her community to be prepared for a life away from the camp.
ACTED has been providing vocational and life skills training to young refugees since 2013, aiming to prepare them for a potential voluntary return by developing skills in line with Myanmar labor market needs. Hairdressing, computer, motorcycle repair or hotel services are some of the courses offered, all of them complemented by a life skills course designed to ensure that the participants have all the necessary information and tools to jump into the work world outside the camp. How to manage time, take decisions, communicate, work in a team or develop a CV are some of the topics covered during the life skills course provided by Soe Meh, now an ACTED Life Skills Trainer.
Soe Meh is very talkative and always smiling. Among the refugees, this is not a very common feature, as they are usually shy and quiet. She hopes that, one day, her two-year-old daughter will enjoy a life outside the camp and she is proud to say that she will be able to help her and guide her in her path.