Arriving in Australia had its challenges. With no prior education or experience, Boe spent the beginning of her schooling learning English outside of her normal school classes. Yet, with hard work and determination throughout her years of schooling, Boe was awarded the Year Advisor Award at the end of high school. The award recognised her many leadership roles and her involvement in a variety of events, the Young Women’s Forum as one of many.
Beyond her extensive involvement with her school, Boe was selected to participate in SCARF’s Youth Safety Road Program and the Karenni Youth Group run by Illawarra Migrant Services. She was further involved in the Refugee Forum Leadership Camp. Her work and volunteer experience led Boe Meh to be awarded the Friends of Zeinab Senior Secondary Scholarship by the Public Education Foundation which she will use to fund her university education.
Looking to her mum as her role model, Boe said that her mum inspires and empowers her to not give up during the hard times. Fleeing the Karen War, her mum raised six children within the refugee camps. Despite the difficult circumstances and poor living conditions, Boe’s mum fostered an abandoned Thai child, raising her alongside her own children. It was her mum’s own compassion and selflessness that Boe says has shaped her into who she is today.
Boe considers that being from a refugee background has helped her see things differently. Settling in a country as a refugee had many barriers and challenges. However, with the support of organisations like SCARF, she has been able to find her passion to make a change and help other people with a similar experience.
“I want my accomplishments to serve as evidence that no matter what challenges we face, and even if we are at a disadvantage compared to others, we can conquer them and achieve our goals.”
For the future, Boe hopes to continue to raise awareness about ethnic groups in Myanmar. Recognising her achievements and contributions to the community, she continues to inspire the SCARF community with her dedication and hard work.