Myo Oo

Surat Thani


In Myanmar, Myo Oo was taught by his parents how to cut rubber trees from a very young age. Since he was not making enough money in Myanmar in the rubber fields, he decided to go and find work in Thailand.

At the age of 12, Myo Oo and his friend were smuggled in a boat across the border from Mon state in Myanmar to Ranong province, Thailand, taking them three days to get there.   

In Ranong, he used his rubber cutting skills, earning 10 baht for every kilo of rubber he collected. During this time, he had also worked at a shrimp factory in Mahachai, Samut Sakhon province.

When he first arrived, Myo Oo was an undocumented child working illegally in Thailand. For years, he had to run and hide from Thai authorities whenever they were checking migrants’ paperwork. Having no access to any form of social welfare protection or support, he was on his own and vulnerable to many forms of exploitation. Three years ago, his life changed when Thailand opened up the regularization process. He received his Thai pink card and passport and can now access the benefits he and other migrants are entitled to. Presently Myo Oo and his wife, Mithae Mar, live and work in southern Thailand on rubber plantations.

Photo by Luke Duggleby

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