This project seeks to build the capacity of Burmese ethnic minority organizations and individuals to investigate, document and report on human rights violations in their communities; understand the relationship of such violations on the health of the populations; to advocate for survivors and witnesses to the ongoing crackdown in ethnic areas; and to engage in the democratization of Burma.
The Center, along with the Global Health Access Program (GHAP) and several human rights groups on the ground, train health care workers along the borders of Thailand, India and China in methods to investigate and document, on a population level, human rights violations in Burma’s hard-to-reach zones of conflict. The workshops will also provide intensive training in human rights principles, gender equality and social justice. Population-based surveys conducted in these areas provides an understanding of how such violations affect the morbidity and mortality levels of the ethnic minority groups, while workshops conducted in the sites provide intensive training in human rights principles, gender equality and social justice. As activists, monks, nuns, students and others flee to areas under ethnic control, especially as a result of the Saffron Revolution in 2007, it is critical to document their accounts and advocate on their behalf.
In addition to the population-based surveys, the Center’s has conducted recent investigations and interviews with survivors and aid workers along Burma’s delta with the intent to gain important insights into the relief efforts and humanitarian concerns surrounding the destruction by Cyclone Nargis. These interviews provide crucial opportunities to investigate their experiences and advocate for international and local support. This report is expected to be delivered February/March 2009.