KWO initially provided Literacy classes for beginners and Non-formal education classes for the newly literate in 5 refugee camps in Thailand and in Ei Tu Hta IDP camp in Karen State. In recent years, demand for these classes was decreasing. The reasons were not very clear but we received reports from community members that participants had no income and wanted jobs; were resettled; were not interested in learning; had family or health problems; or were busy looking after children. Due to these dwindling numbers, in 2010, KWO stopped providing Literacy classes in 4 of the camps and stopped the Non-formal Education program altogether. The Literacy program is continuing in Umphiem and Noh Poe camps where the interest in the program is still strong. In those camps, men and women from non-Karen ethnic groups have also joined the literacy classes to learn the Karen language so that they can speak with and find jobs with Karen people in the camp.
Published by Karen Women Organisation
The Karen Women Organisation was formed in 1949 and has a membership of over 64,100 women. KWO is a community-based organisation of Karen women working in development and relief in the refugee camps on the Thai border and with IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) and women inside Burma. Since our formation in 1949 we have expanded our focus from one of purely social welfare to try to encourage an awareness of Women's Rights and to promote women’s participation in the community decision making and political processes. The objectives of the KWO To assist women in the endeavour to be free from all forms of oppression. To promote and empower women in all spheres of life, including education and general living standards. To encourage women to participate in the struggle for freedom, democracy and equality. To develop women's knowledge, ability and skills, including political and organizational skills. To achieve the rights of women and equal status with men. To promote and maintain Karen culture and traditions. To improve the well-being of women and children and to increase their access to adequate health, education and welfare services. KWO aims to empower women through offering various capacity building trainings to teach skills, build confidence and create new opportunities so that women will be better able to solve problems. We are working hard to educate ourselves and our communities so that we can work more effectively and advocate for our struggle on the international stage. We believe that women’s contribution is an essential factor in the peace-building and national reconciliation processes of Burma. View all posts by Karen Women Organisation