KWO Central completed a successful Community Organizing trip between 22nd March and 9th April 2015 to the three districts in Karen State. KWO Central divided into two small groups including KWO Executive Committee members, Central Standing Committee members, Project Management Team members and some other KWO staff members. The two groups went to Kler Lwee Htu, Taw Oo and Hpa An districts. They met with more than 1,500 people within the Karen community to discuss and share information about the work of KWO and the Peace Process. It was also a chance to learn more about the local current situation. KWO Central team were pleased to meet with different local and community leaders. We would like to send our heartfelt thanks to all of the township leaders, district leaders, district KWO members and responsible people who assisted our teams during these trips. We very much appreciate all their hard work. Community Organizing trips are an important part of KWO’s work as they help the Central staff and committee members to connect with the local community, learn about new developments and keep everyone informed and up to date.
The Karen Women’s Organization (KWO) celebrated the 30th anniversary of KWO Day at Tar Kreh Village, Hpa-An District in Karen State, Burma on Sunday 5th April, 2015. Over 300 people attended and participated in this special event. KWO women leaders from Doo Pla Yar, Doo Tha Htu and Hpa-An districts participated in the event. There were two sections to the overall event. The first part was a celebration and the second part included handing out KWO honorarium certificates to long term full-time staffs who have worked for KWO continually over 10 years. During this event there 10 out of the total 100 women honored were able to make it in person to receive their “Certificate of Honor”. KWO will send out the certificates to KWO district offices for all those women who were unable to attend. They will make sure that all the remaining 90 women will receive their special honor. KWO also successfully launched their new book and report on the eve of the 30th anniversary. The book is called “Karen Traditional Clothes” and the report is the new Karen language version of KWO’s “Walking Amongst Sharp Knives”. Special thanks to all those who participated from the local community, local leaders of Hpa-An District, Karen Youth Organization , Karen Women Empowerment Group and others women leaders who made it to the event.
As KWO first reported in 2010, in lowland Karen areas in Eastern Burma Karen women are more and more becoming chiefs, as people have hoped they will not be killed by the Burmese Army like some male chiefs. This is a big change in our traditions and has made women more visible and vulnerable to human rights abuses by the Burmese Army. It also means that women have become leaders when our community has most needed it. Many women stood up and faced the Burmese Army directly representing and working for our people. These women leaders are now experienced leaders of our community with knowledge about how their community works and how to deal with the Burmese Army Continue reading →
“No Women No Peace”
WHAT: 5th April is KWO 30th Anniversary so we would like you to come celebrate with KWO on this special day. KWO Day celebrates the many women who contribute to building and strengthening the Karen community at every level. We will be honoring those who have served KWO full time for more than 10 years. We will also be launching 1 report and 1 book. These important documents both written in Karen language serve as important sources for our
community. One of the publications is the first Karen version of our seminal publication on Karen women village leaders in Burma; “Walking Among Sharp Knives”. It is essential at this time to highlight the importance of women’s leadership during the most dangerous periods of the long armed conflict compared with the current lack of women present during the peace process happening now in Burma. The other publication follows on from our Traditional Clothing competition last year and is a book in Karen about the rich tapestry of Traditional Clothing found in our Karen communities. The two publications will allow Karen women to advocate for themselves and better understand what is happening to the community broadly.
On 14th March, 2015 KWO joined the event campaign of ” Salween, Not for Sale!” And “No Dam” Which was organised by Karen Rivers Watch(KRW) on the International Day of Actoin for Rivers and Against Dams. There were more than 500 people from the local areas and others Karen community based Organisations such as KSNG,KESAN, FTUK, KHRG and other Karen Local community leaders actively participated.The event successfully done and we are looking forward to see more accountability and transparency from those companies and other stakeholders who are trying to built Dams on Salween River. We stand with all local people and support their call for “No Dam!”