Civil Peace Service in Myanmar
The democratisation and transition process in Myanmar, which has been kept isolated and under authoritarian rule for decades, remains fragile. While civil society is organising itself using the newly available political space, it does not yet have sufficient capacity and appropriate access to adequately respond to peace negotiations or the limited political openings and ensure their demands are met. In particular, the participation of women does not, or only to a limited extent, exist. Moreover, Myanmar’s society is highly fragmented and the politicisation of religious, ethnic, or other differences continues to lead to social tensions. Thereby lacking are approaches and methods of civil and nonviolent conflict transformation.
Against this background, within the framework of the Civil Peace Service we support our local partners to achieve the following main objectives:
- Key civil society actors in Myanmar have civil conflict management skills and apply them actively in their daily lives and work practices. They thus contribute to the dismantling of stereotypes and prejudice, counter various forms of discrimination and help to break the spiral of violence and create a more peaceful society.
- In parallel, civil society stakeholders play an active role in the transformation process by publicising their views, needs and agendas through nonviolent campaigns, lobbying and advocacy and articulating them successfully to policy-makers. In a best-case scenario, they bring about the amendment of discriminatory legislation and procedures and, through a rights-based approach, make a significant contribution to democratic change.
Mote Oo was formed in January 2013 by staff with many years of experience working in Myanmar education. There are two offices, one in Yangon and one in Mae Sot, on the Thai-Myanmar border. Mote.Oo is a small, community-focused organisation, specializing in teacher training and the development of adult education materials. The aim is to promote social change through context appropriate materials and services for the non-formal (non-state) adult education sector. Through this, they support community educators in building a just and peaceful society. They design a range of course materials, ranging from social science, civic education and English language materials, to meet the needs of teachers and students in the non-formal adult education sector. Through the CPS-cooperation with KURVE Wustrow, Mote.Oo aims to support a comprehensive peace education in the Myanmar society. Currently, a curriculum for conflict transformation is being developed and teachers of the informal education sector will receive training on how to use and implement it.
Kalayana Mitta Foundation (KMF) began to work on issues of community development and social justice with young adults as a grassroots movement in 2008. With their work KMF aims to increase awareness, understanding and solidarity amongst the diverse ethnic and religious identities in Myanmar. KMF was registered as an NGO in 2013. The organisation understands its actions to be founded on the values of the worldwide movement of socially engaged Buddhism. KMF has offices in Yangon, Loikaw and by Inle Lake. Over the years KMF established around 30 groups of alumni across Myanmar within the context of “youth for development”. KMF further focuses on peace development, conflict management, interfaith dialogue, ecological farming, environmental justice, and the empowerment of local communities in the context of resource extraction and major infrastructure projects. As part of the cooperation within the CPS KURVE Wustrow supports KMF in the conceptual development of a peace education project and advocacy for education.
Project Details at a Glance
“Strengthening local capacities for nonviolent conflict transformation and political participation”
International Peace Workers:
Felix Hessler (Mote.Oo)
Anna-Lena Schulz (KMF)
Véronique Geraud (Ar Yone Oo)
Karen Watermann (Loiko)
Birgit Funke (Regional Coordinator)
Contact Person: Hanne Celis, hcelis(at)kurvewustrow.org