Country Report of Myanmar
Submit to Midterm General Assembly WBUAP
21st -24th Nov 2014, Hong Kong
In the period of midterm 2013-14, transaction of political situation in the country shift to positive change in the area of social responsibility. Laws for civil society organizations including registration Law have enacted. Law for disability is still in the process of reviewing. Disability affair has been raising up to national context. Policy makers started to open appointment for disable peoples’ organizations. DPOs successfully organized National Disability Forum that was conducted in June 2014 and established National council for disability. UNCRPD is not yet implemented among government sector. It started being introduced to Social Welfare department office located in each state and division.
Many INGOs came to work bringing technical and financial support to strengthen CSO in the country and lead to advocacy work. Handicap International, ABILIS foundation and DAI Victim Assistance and Disability extend their branch office in 2014. That is the opportunity for DPOs to build up working capacity. Some other INGOs are also interested to make include disability issue in their project because of the government ratified UNCRPD.
Organizations and schools of/for the blind could make improve their capacity of providing services. Number of enrollment in each school is raising up. Media channels appeared rapidly and these social institutions have got attention to bring up to the public. They receive more local donations to increase quality of accommodation, food and build up required space. All schools extend the program of awareness raising to the parents of blind children and prevention blindness collaborating with Eye care service group and religious donor organizations. Two more schools were established in two different region of the country. A very first training center for the blind was founded in July 2014 which can provide services for adult blind. Before that, there is no room for blind persons who are over schooling age, (above 25 years old).
Nevertheless we did such improvement mention above, the most important area is remained at the grass level that is lack of skillful teachers in all schools. Consequently, the schools cannot broad up skillful and qualified students.
Myanmar National Association of the Blind (MNAB) have got registration from government in December 2013. MNAB focus on its organizational development since the beginning of 2013. Meanwhile, Vision alliance visited for facts finding overall situation. WBUBPC members came to hold the meeting. Danish Association of the Blind came for facts finding mission and signed MOU for partnership working.
By the support of WBUAP;
MNAB conducted OD training for committee members.
Received O&M training and white canes provided by Korean Blind Union of its international program.
Participated in ONKYO Braille Essay contest.
WBUAP-BPC recommended MNAB to Danish Association of the blind DAB for partnership working in the third phase project. It is a very great opportunity for MNAB to strengthen the organization as its essential needs to be able to work nationwide.
MNAB could step on advocacy initiative work such as conducting Training on the Rights of persons with disability and ASEAN Mechanism, Advocacy workshop on the right of Education for visual impaired persons at Ministry of Education and go on to the Parliament members.
By the collaborating with ICEVI, MNAB implemented Higher Education project of providing University preparation training, Laptop computer borrowing program, negotiating with Universities to build up accessible learning environment. MNAB also collaborate with ONNET promoting ICT area for visual impaired persons. We start computer basic training in Yangon and planning to extend the training to other states and divisions. Myanmar Text to Speech engine has been developed by support of ICEVI and ONNET.
In conclusion, overall situation of the country has been moved. Public awareness on disability is raising up. Persons with disabilities have more opportunity open. Private companies started open job place for PWDs. Service delivery for visual impaired has been increasing. MNAB will focus on capacity building and advocacy work in the next two years term.
Ms. Kwai Nan
Myanmar National Associaton of the blind