Offering vocational training to more than 1,200 PWDs for 15 yearsIn Myanmar, the superstition still persists among people that PWDs were born the way they were because they were sinful in their former lives. In Burmese, the official language of Myanmar, being handicapped has a connotation of “being unable to do anything”, and people tend to dismiss PWDs as unskilled. This explains why PWDs generally have no choice but to be dependent on their family members. As a matter of fact, family members have little or no interest on how to educate PWDs. In addition to these social and cultural factors in Myanmar, the limited number of social workers and limited budget has resulted in fewer opportunities for PWDs to get involved in their community.
|In the Dressmaking course, age of the students ranges from 18 to 40. (May 30th, 2014)|
|“This is what we made!” - the staff and the trainees at a shop annexed in the training school proudly smile, holding their works.|
Successful GraduatesThe trainees from all over Myanmar become boarders and go through three and a half months of training, after which they can become financially independent in their hometowns. Approximately 80% of graduates have successfully been offered a job or have started their own businesses. Here are a few examples.
Tin Tin Aye “I’m happy that I can support my family.”
Tin, 27 years old, graduated from the Sewing course in 2011. A native of Eyawadi, she is handicapped in her right leg due to polio she suffered from the age of three. She learned about the AAR training school from her friends and enrolled. After three and a half months of hard training, she acquired excellent skills. In the following 8 months, she studied store management designed for graduates, after which she joined her family who had moved to Yangon and started her own shop as a dressmaker. It’s been three years since then. While getting orders for custom-made clothing, she gives classes to girls interested in dressmaking. “I’m very happy that I can support my family now,” she said.
|Ms. Tin Tin Aye, who started her own tailor shop in her house (March 8th, 2014)|
Wai, 27 years old, is handicapped in his left leg due to polio. After studying in the Hairdressing course, he started his own barber shop in Dara with his handicapped partners. His partners are in charge of management and financial matters while getting their local neighbors to have a better understanding of PWDs. In the future, they are planning to donate school supplies to handicapped children in the area with the profits of his shop, thus contributing to the welfare of local PWDs. Such activities has proved to be a good opportunity for PWDs to participate in their community and for the local people to learn more about PWDs.
|Mr. Wai Lin Maung working as a hairdresser in a barber shop which he runs with his partners (August 13th, 2013)|
thanks to the excellent service at the shops operated by the graduates nationwide as well as their involvement in local awareness campaigns.
Offering Job Opportunities to PWDIn Myanmar, a country of rapid economic growth, national and international businesses have been quite successful. Even so, not all PWDs are fortunate enough to be offered employment. AAR has been trying hard to improve this situation by giving the trainees an opportunity to visit a
company or to obtain an internship so that they can be employed in a company, factory or shop.
specialize in employment services, thus giving support to prospective workers with disabilities.
AAR is committed to support the trainees and the graduates who have the capacity to
work in various communities in Myanmar from now on.
|I visited a garment factory with a student in Dressmaking course. This factory is located in the suburbs of Yangon, where 5 graduates have been employed since April, 2014. (February 8th, 2014)|
|Students in IT course visited a shop selling computer-related merchandise to learn the demand on the market. (August 1st, 2013)|