We spent the first week in Yangon visiting with members of such organizations as the HIV Positive Sex Workers Group, Muslim Interfaith Network on AIDS, Save the Children, Burnet Institute, and Religions for Peace, to name just a few. The next three days were spent touring the pagodas of Bagan and taking a bus trip to Mt. Poppa.
After three days in Bagan, we headed to Mandalay. The students really enjoyed Mandalay and were happily surprised to see so many Chinese businesses in the neighborhood of our hotel. Although the students spoke no Burmese, they were able to easily get around with their Mandarin and Cantonese.
In Mandalay, we visited the famous Phaung Daw Oo monastic school, followed around doctors from a Japanese NGO that provides free medical care at a monastic hospital, and spent time playing with children at a monastic orphanage where many of the children were HIV positive. After a day trip to Pyin Oo Lwin to get some respite from the relentless Mandalay heat, the students left on an overnight bus to Yangon where they would then head off to Hong Kong the following morning.