What I Want For My Birthday: You’ll Be Shocked (Hopefully)

There’s an option on Facebook for not revealing how old you are or when your birthday is. But I love the attention, and so I leave it on.

For my birthday, I wish for all my friends to do something in your capacity to help the most unwanted people on the planet – the Rohingya. Watch the video below:

This Guardian video is just the tip of the iceberg. Thousands have died, hundreds more have been and remain in slavery, and thousands and thousands more are being persecuted, marginalised and unwanted by the countries the Rohingya straddle – Bangladesh, Myanmar – and because this crisis is growing as they put themselves to sea, the rest of ASEAN.

We need to do more as a leader within ASEAN, and not simply say, ‘we have no space for refugees, let’s donate money’, and then forget about this epic tragedy amidst the throes of our simisaialsoSG50.

So, if you’re thinking of getting me a present, do these things instead:

1. Share and spread the word – let people know about the Rohingya;

2. Donate to organisations helping the Rohingyas, either in the refugee camps in Malaysia or in Myanmar itself. In Singapore, Islamic-Relief is helping with food and housing for the Rohingya within Myanmar;

3. Make a list in the comments here on which other organization are helping, and suggest other ways we can help.


Fixed the link to the Islamic Relief donation page

Links Contributed:

Boaz’s Fundraiser to Raise Awareness
Arakan Rohingya National Organisation
HumanSecurity.Org page for Rohingya