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Partners in Myanmar

Gaia Sustainable Management institute (GSMI) is working to empower grassroots and marginalized communities to prevent poverty and enhance their capacity in order to help themselves with the aim to strengthen civil society in Myanmar by enhancing the capacity of local civil society groups and the Buddhist Sangha to initiate and support sustainable community-led development activities. After 16 years of work, many of its alumni have contributed to the development and growth of local civil society groups/networks and fostered the empowerment local communities to address their own needs in a participatory and sustainable manner. NPA is supporting GSMI to empower grassroots groups through its peace leadership approach in conflict affected areas of Karen state and Bago state.

Shalom Foundation (SF) is a local NGO in Myanmar with the vision of creating a just and peaceful society for all people in Myanmar. Activities range from facilitation of high level mediation talks between the military government and ethnic armed groups to peace education. It has fourteen community based peace-building programs throughout Myanmar, including support to citizen networks and organizations engaging in advocacy to promote advances in democratic governance at local level, and to assist a gradual increase in the quality and quantity of civic engagement in the political process. NPA expects to support Shalom on initiatives in relation to voter education and election preparation of communities.

Karen Development Network (also known as Knowledge and Dedication for Nation Building) is a church-based Karen organization with a vision of strengthening civil society in Myanmar and especially the civic engagement of ethnic communities and the younger generation. Through its Community Management (CM) training program, KDN has created a national network of people who can manage community organizations and initiate community action. The organization used this established network as a means to create space for inclusive participation in the peace process for Karen communities in Myanmar through the establishment of peace support groups and inter-ethnic dialogue opportunities.

The Capacity Building Initiative (CBI) aims to provide skills training for Myanmar nationals so that local knowledge and expertise in Myanmar can be drawn on to design, implement and manage more effective development projects. In addition to improving the capacity of NGO staff to design and manage development interventions, CBI works to train local people as trainers, build a resource center and encourage co-operation and networking among NGOs thereby empowering local people and ensuring sustainable benefits.

Paung Ku (PK) is a civil society strengthening initiative established in 2007 by a consortium of international and local agencies in Myanmar. PK channels small grants and capacity building to local grassroots groups and facilitates networking within civil society for learning, sharing and influencing wider change, with increasing engagement on advocacy between civil society and policy actors, political change and peace initiatives. NPA has been a board member of Paung Ku since 2008. In 2013, Paung Ku transitioned to be an independent local NGO.

Ecodev is a Myanmar NGO focused on sustainable rights-based development and environmental protection. It works to improve environmental governance, empower citizens to defend their resource rights, and to promote pro-poor public policy reform in natural resource management and environmental conservation. Ecodev aims to strengthen civil society participation in public policy reform on issues such as renewable energy policy, land tenure security and sustainable foreign direct investment. NPA supports Ecodev on its 'Uplifting Resource Governance on Extractives' programme.

Akhaya Women (Akhaya) is a women's organization dedicated to achieving women's equality and empowerment. It works to provide access to education on sexuality, reproductive health, and gender roles for young girls and, through mentorship programs, provides leadership training and facilitates the establishment of other grassroots women's groups and networks across the country. In 2012, Akhaya launched "WHISTLE FOR HELP", an anti-sexual harassment campaign that gained significant attention to the issue of female harassment on buses, and was part of a wider effort to advocate for laws relating to women's protection and domestic violence.

Women Can Do It (WCDI) is a capacity building and awareness-raising project aimed at increasing women's ability to be influential in private and public life, and to take up decision making positions on equal terms as men. In collaboration with a network of local organizations and with support from Norwegian Labor Party Women, WCDI provides leadership training of trainers to women from political parties, civil society and the private sector that aims to build confidence, discuss the rules of political and organizational work and give courage to the participants to speak out and take part in decision-making processes. As well as capacity building and campaigning for women's empowerment, WCDI has been strongly engaged on advocacy and lobbying, providing input to the constitutional review and promoting the development of a 30% women candidate policy in political parties.

Charity-Oriented Myanmar (COM) was established as a local youth organization in 2005, supporting a range of issues including non-formal education and community development initiatives. With the expanding space for democratization, COM is focused on nurturing youth leadership and political awareness through provision of training and mentoring on good citizenship, political analysis and skills development to young leaders from throughout Myanmar.