Empowering the least fortunate

By Sr. Rosie Moe RGS

“Surround yourself with people who empower you to become better” (Anonymous)

Let me share my opinion on how important of having supportive environment in order to be successful in life. If the environment is not supportive, it would be really difficult to achieve one’s goal. Particularly, the least fortunate is likely to face with challenges and difficulties the most in life. Therefore, creating a supportive environment is really important for the young people to have better outcomes.

I am working closely with girls who are learning skills for their future in our training center. They came from different places all over Myanmar. Most of them are from the regions affected by the ongoing civil war and ethnic conflicts where thousands of women and children are helpless, voiceless and vulnerable. By running a vocational training center in Mandalay, Myanmar, we are helping and supporting those girls and young women to have a better future. I feel it is really important to realize the potential of women and their participation in the development of the country.

The center started in 2016 with thirty girls from different parts of Myanmar. It takes one year to complete the program which offers courses on English and Computer, Sewing, Beautification, Accounting, Hotel management, Hospitality & tourism. The trainees can freely choose the courses based on their own interest and educational background. Unfortunately, the trainees cannot choose some of the courses due to their level of education. As the country is in its transitional period, economic empowerment and creating job opportunities for the young women are really important for the development of the country. Therefore together with the trainees we are helping them to get a better job in order to help themselves and their families as well as for the good of the country.

On the other hand, the program provides life skills, psycho-social support, and awareness raising programs, relaxation activities, excursion and team building. As the trainees have come from different parts of the country, they have different cultures and practices which enrich each one of them.

The program is now in its fourth year and has empowered 187 girls and young women. Most of them are already working in different fields according to their learned skills. It is really supporting them to become an independent person both financially and socially. One of the great challenges for us is that the more the program is progressing and offering more courses, the more the facilities and services are required. We make sure that our services are more accessible for all the girls and women without leaving anyone behind. In turn, after learning the skills, they will generously share back to those who are less fortunate in their respective environment.