The EarthRights School Myanmar (ERSMY) contributes to the development of a vibrant and well-informed civil society in Myanmar and in communities along the Thai-Myanmar border through the intensive training of young environmental and human rights activists from diverse ethnic backgrounds. The ERSMY training program is designed to create young leaders with skills and knowledge to work on earth rights issues in their communities in Myanmar, while also providing a model that combines a balance of theoretical and experiential practical learning for activists and community leaders.
Since ERSMY’s establishment in 1999, it has gained a reputation for graduating highly effective peace and environmental and human rights advocates for Myanmar. Whether the issue is degradation associated with mining or logging, struggles against proposed dams on the Salween River, the development of the India-Myanmar pipeline or the relationship between forced labor and development, ERSMY’s alumni can be found playing important roles.
Since 1999, 167 students have graduated from the program and are actively working for social change and environmental protection in grassroots organizations both inside Myanmar and along the border areas. This growing network of alumni is supported in undertaking their grassroots work inside Myanmar and along the border areas through the activities of the Myanmar Alumni Program. The alumni program seeks to maximize the impact of their work by providing ongoing structured opportunities for graduates to network, collaborate, exchange information and resources, and receive training and technical assistance.