The IDPs return home with dignity and safety? “We do not dare to go back because of the landmines that are planted in the fields where we make our living. If we go back, we could lose our limbs at any moment.” Currently, the Burma Army’s operations in Mutraw District violates the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement and has recently displaced more than 2,000 villagers from their homes. These displaced villagers, feel unsafe, have received threats, concerns and repression to return to their abandoned villages. They feel there is no guarantee for their safety and security and many political problems are unresolved. The displaced Karen people in Ei Tu Hta IDP camp are now facing a massive humanitarian crisis.
Please watch this video produced by KWO and Karen News about the current crisis
On the occasion of KWO’s 33rd anniversary, April 5, 2018, we celebrate our successes while also looking at our challenges ahead and how to overcome them. KWO will have it’s largest celebration of the anniversary in the Taw Oo District of Karen State led by the KWO Central leadership. The celebration includes a sport competition, a concert showing Karen culture, songs, and dancing. KWO will also present information on KWO’s work, the peace process and gender equality. KWO will particularly honor KWO leaders and staff who have worked full time for 10 years, 15 years, 20 years and 25 years respectively. KWO is the strong vibrant organization we have become because of their commitment and hard work.
It is our honor to recognize Nan Paw Gay as well for her leadership and contribution to our community and to Burma. She is a member of the KWO Standing Committee and has worked in community media. Due to her talent and hard work she rose to Chief Editor of the Karen Information Center in 2008. She was also Burma News International (BNI) Executive Director.
Additionally, we honor a KWO young leader, Naw Hser Hser, a KWO Standing Committee member and Joint General Secretary of the Women’s League of Burma. Naw Hser Hser won the P’doh Mahn Sha Young Leadership Award this year which she will receive on KWO day. KWO congratulates Naw Hser Hser on her award. Naw Hser Hser is a role model for younger women in our community through her hard work for KWO, the Karen community, and the entire ethnic community in Burma.
Both these women show the strength, vision, and hard work of Karen women and inspire all of us through their work.
In addition to all these women we also want to recognize the 80 Traditional Birth Attendants who work with KWO for their incredible contribution to the health and well being of women and children in our community.
KWO will honor 151 women and 2 men today for their positive contribution the Karen community. The list of those being recognized follows:
Women’s Champion in Social Work: Nan Paw Gay, Chief Editor of Karen Information Center and Executive Director of Burma News International
Women with over 25 years of service: P’doh Myaing Poe, P’doh Paw Day Toe, Tharmu Shwe Paw, Thramu Baw Nyaw, P’doh Naw Dah Dah, and Naw Khin Yin
Women with over 10 years of service: 31 women
Women with over 15 years of service: 30 women
Women with over 5 years of service: 5 women
Traditional Birth Attendants: 80 people (78 women and 2 men)
On the 23rd of November, KWO members and leaders were excited to launch our 16 day International Days for the Elimination of Violence against Women Campaign. The KWO campaign focus this year, is “Stop Domestic Violence Against Women and Children”. We will have activities in 7 Karen Refugees Camps and 7 districts in Karen State for members of our community to participate in. Below are photos from the launch.
Happy International Women’s Day to all women around the world. We all deserve this special day and recognition for what we do and what we contribute to our family, community and country.
On this special day we, KWO, encourage ALL WOMEN everywhere to be bold for the change you want to see in this world, NOW and every day!
We stand together with women everywhere and stand in solidarity with you in our shared struggles for peace and justice in our homes, villages, communities, countries and the world.
We are proud to be with you and to be part of the women’s community made up of so many amazing women, like you, around the world and here at home. Together, we can be bold. By becoming stronger, we can continue to change the world one step and one leap at a time!
KWO is in urgent need of a volunteer who can come and work with us for a minimum of 6 months. Ideally, we would love a volunteer who is fluent in both the Karen language, as well as the English language. However, we are also happy if we can find a volunteer to work with us who is fluent in English and has good writing skills. We are looking for a volunteer who is between the age of 25 to 50.
It would be best if a volunteer has some experience in working in community or in humanitarian work. We are also looking for self-confidence and good physical health with some background knowledge of Burma, the Thai Burma border and our women’s movement. The volunteer would be expected to work 5 days a week and would be mostly based in our Mae Sariang office. KWO can provide shared accommodation in the KWO staff house, 3 mealsa day and a bicycle for getting around the small town of Mae Sariang.
The work would mostly involve assisting with the editing of funding proposalsand reports,occasionally summarizing important news or reports for the women in our organization to be able to understand them and assisting staff in writing emails. If the volunteer had some skills that were useful for our staff, we may also ask them to share these.
For Karen women living overseas (especially), this would be a great opportunity to get some hands on work experience in a development setting, as well as a wonderful opportunity to understand the current situation on the border and in Burma. This kind of experience is highly regarded by colleges as well as by employers.
KWO team together with some other community supporters went to Naw Hta Village and distributed the emergency needs for the recent displaced people. All of the materials that we districted are shown in pictures below.
KWO conducted a need assessment in Htee Thay Khee and Naw Hta, between the 18 – 20 Sept 2016. The total number of IDPs is 530 and they are from Ler Peh Dea,Jay Baw Klo, Thay Kaw, Poe Chit Lea, Nya Mer Tay Hta, Oo Moo Kee and Mae Wah village.The latest number of newly displaced people in Htee Thay Khee is 146 people from 25 families, Naw Hta is 193 from 30 families and in Mae Law Hta is 16 people from 3 families and Mae Tha Waw is 175 people from 38 families.
The villagers are in urgent need of food, clothing, pots, pans, plates, plastic sheets, water containers, shoes, blankets, mats, mosquito nets and other personal hygiene packages. For the moment this displaced people received some dried foods and clothing from the individuals donation. KWO is coordinating with other Karen CBOs and individuals to response to this emergency situations.
There has been serious fighting in the Mae Tha Waw area of Hpa An District. The Burma Army-proxy Border Guard Force (BGF) attacked a faction of the DKBA and since then the conflict has been going on throughout September.
If you interested to contribute please contact KWO at firstname.lastname@example.org or call KWO Emergency Relief Contact Person Naw Paw K’Yeh Moo at 66 857309056 for more information.
In recognition of International Day of Peace on the 21 September, 2016 we, KWO would like to share our message with everyone and hope to see “Genuine and Sustainable Peace” in Burma soon. KWO main theme for this year is ” Sustainable Peace , need genuine women’s participation”.
Please see KWO Message in Karen for more information.