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Lansing's Naing Myanmar Family Restaurant raises money for people impacted by Myanmar military coup

Posted at 5:22 PM, Jun 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-10 22:45:10-04

LANSING, Mich. — On a typical day, you can catch pots sizzling at the Naing Myanmar Family restaurant on the south side.

The owners, Mi Thanda and Moe Israel, are usually busy whipping up dishes that the community can’t get enough of.

These days, they're also raising money for people in their home county of Myanmar, which is dealing with violence and social unrest in the wake of a military coup that started back on February.

“That army is just crazy,” Israel said. “There’s no law, no law at all. They can take anything they want at any time.”

Israel and Thanda decided to start a fundraiser with hopes of giving back to the citizens resisting the coup and those impacted by the violence. Once a month the couple sets up shop at the Dimondale Farmers Market and sells their dishes to the community.

“All the sales and what we make at the farmer’s market, we give to the people over in our country,” Thanda said.

Moe Israel

“We could help with the money, a lot of government workers, citizens and everyone needs help there, so we can help with that,” said Israel, who marched in protest against the country's one-party rule with thousands of other students in 1988, back when Myanmar was Burma, back before the last military coup.

Israel and Thanda both have family in Myanmar and hope they can make a difference for the country they will always call home.

“We have to win this strike, and win this revolution,” Israel said.

“We have to win this strike, and win this revolution,” Israel said.