A 17-year ceasefire came to an end last year between Myanmar and the Kachin Independence Army, and the fighting has continued ever since.
In footage shot exclusively for Al Jazeera last month, the KIA is shown trying to hold off the advance of government forces toward rebel-held towns.
It is estimated more than 60,000 people are now in refugee camps inside Myanmar and across the border in China. Times are particularly tough in the rainy season, and getting an adequate supply of food is always a challenge.
Wayne Hay reports from Bangkok.