We are willing to dedicate our times and life for the people who needed radiant light to get peaceful and comfortable lives. As a result, we four Karenni ERSB alumni set up the Social Development Center on early 2002 in order to educate our people who are really suffering from human rights violation. The Social Development Center is focused on Human Rights, Environment and Law. The Social Development center (SDC) has already implemented six times training courses and created human rights and environments activists among 100 graduates. Graduates from the SDC have gone on to work in many local camp based organizations- while some have traveled at great risk, into Burma to pass on their new knowledge and skill to communities inside and/or to interview villagers in order to collect information on the human rights and environment situation in inside. The School's approach is practical and interactive. In the classroom, both Burmese and Karenni dialects are used. The school plans to spend nine months in classroom and one month in fieldwork. The program includes lectures, group work, discussions, presentation, reports, activities, assignments etc. In order to promote student's English language, the students spend one hour per day studying English and are also trained in computer skills one time per a week. The school courses cover earth rights, human rights, the environment, women's rights, child rights, non-violence, social change, democracy and government, courts and the rule of law, constitutions and international institutions.
Social Development Center
During more than ten years period, over twenty-two thousands Karenni people have become relocated as refugee in Thailand. There are many diverse Karenni people in the refugee camps. Some are also still living in hide out area. Even though there are many thousands of Karenni young people in the refugee camps, they are very limited opportunity for education and training and they could not easy to apply further education and knowledge from training. For these reasons, most of the Karenni people do not know about human rights and how to protect their rights. They have only sacrificed their lives in violence way and abuse each other. On the other hand, there are also no human rights trainers or the people who can share these importance issues for people inside. We really would like to create mobile trainers for border area and inside. We also would like to have strongly unite and solidarity among Earthrights alumni in Karenni. We strongly believe that if we do not have awareness of human rights and practicing rule of law in our community, we will not able to promote our living standard as well as we would not be able to change government system in Burma. So that we are willing to dedicate our times and lives for our people who have been suffering human rights violation in Burma.
The Social Development Center is going to conduct a ten-month long training course project in 2009-2010. After finishing the training course, at least 17 of the 25 graduates will become mobile trainers and will spread their knowledge throughout the border region and inside Karenni state. SDC also collaborates with Karenni State Constitution Drafting Committee and Karenni Legal Education Committee in order to implement our vision and goal. To develop our school curriculum, we collaborated with our former teachers from ERS (EarthRights School). In our training center, some of our subjects are taught in English in addition to a daily hour-long language class. Therefore, we contact with OSI curriculum project and get English curriculum. During our project, we also ask suggestions and advice from EarthRights International since they have many experiences in running training projects. In past courses, other alumni from different areas also came and taught in some subjects at our training center. Past Accomplishments The Social Development Center Training School has already produced 100 human rights and environment activists between 2003 to 2009. Many Social Development Center Training School graduates have returned and are involved in their community base organizations, such as women organizations, youth organizations, administration, justice and other human rights and environment organizations. Some have taken up a more risky work inside Burma to gather information related to human rights and environmental abuses Karenni people are facing, reporting them to internal and international communities who share common goals with the Social Development Program. As a result of the training school’s graduate campaign activities and short term training, Karenni people in the camp as well as villages inside Karenni State have started discussing and fighting for human rights. The major demonstrations and increased demands for human rights consideration show our project to be a success. In addition, many gradates have taken jobs in refugee camp justice offices to carry out the implementation of fair and balanced judicial processes. The Karenni population from inside Karenni state as well as in the camps has asked for the continuous opening of Social Development Center Training School every year, contributing their support to the school through their physical and works support. This year, the camp authority has support us in building a water tank and pipe for the school and the reconstruction of theschool building. As a result of this kind of support we feel that we have received great support for the program from the community. Taking into consideration the change in the view and attitude of the people From the change in the views and attitudes of the community, it is evident that the The Social Development Training School has become a vital program for the advancement of the Karenni community. The activists we have produced have become important for the Karenni community, but we also strongly believe that they will sow the seeds of a democratic Burma.
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