For the first semester of 2009 ERI Alumni Small Grants Program were awarded to 5 different projects. Proposals included 3 trainings, one workshop and finalizing a research. The projects will be implemented during 2009 and after their completion alumni will report back their results where they will recount how the project developed, their successful stories as well as challenges.
One of the alumni proposed a 5 days training in Ka Pain Village about domestic violence, sexual harassment and environment. The training is targeted to 20 women from 10 different villages. The village leader and a school teacher from each village will be the attendees. These women will be chosen because they are in the best position to influence others in the community. The goal of this project is to increase the understanding o f women's issues and empower women to play a more active role in the community.
Ta'ang Students and Youth Organization are planning to carry out 9 workshops for 15-18 people, each, to create awareness about the impacts that the Shweli Dam has on Palaung people. The project will be conducted for a period of 2 months. Moreover, through these workshops TSYO pretends to increase its ability to strengthen its network with the local people in order to cooperate against the dam project along the Shweli River.
Karenni Evergreen has proposed a training for 5 KEG staff members, 2 members from Karenni women organization and 3 staff members from Karenni Social Welfare Development Center. This will be a five days training that will strengthen the knowledge about community forest management. KEG believes that they need more staff members from their organization and their partner organizations to increase their knowledge about this topic. The idea is that after this training KEG and KSWDC staff members will have enough tools to go inside Karenni State and conduct this same training with the communities there.
The Overseas Mon Women Organization is also planning to carry out a training. This project aims to provide 2 one-week-trainings in Mae Sot to 36 Mon migrant workers about Human Rights and the economic situation in Burma. The purpose of this training is to provide the participants with more knowledge and skills in order for them to have more self-confidence to take leading roles in the protection of their rights as workers, as well as the rights of the people in their communities. It is expected that the participants share their knowledge with other migrant workers and that they will advocate for their rights.
This year the Small Grants will support the third and last phase of Life Vision Foundation´s research about gold mining impacts on women and children in Kachin State. The Small Grants Program supported previously phase 1 and 2 of the research. This project intents to prove how severe health and environmental conditions are in gold mines sites are. The 3rd and last part of this project consists in more in-depth interviews that will be put into a documentary. The final result of this project will be to produce a report that will be for international advocacy.
ERI Alumni Small Grants Program is looking forward to hear about the outcomes of these remarkable projects.