Advance Myanmar is founded and run by a team of people with decades of experience of the humanitarian and human rights situation in Myanmar.
Our work includes:
- Emergency humanitarian response
- Civil society capacity building
- Project support
- Administrative support
Recent areas of work include:
Emergency food aid to people displaced by conflict
Advance Myanmar has provided emergency aid for food for ethnic minority villagers who are targeted by the Burmese military and forced to flee their homes. With the government of Myanmar blocking the UN and international agencies from accessing these areas, the community organisations we work with are the only way to get aid to these populations.
In ethnic states where there is or has recently been conflict there is little or no official healthcare provision, and access by the UN and international agencies is restricted. Advance Myanmar supports a mobile health project with clinics and travelling healthcare teams to reach remote areas without healthcare provision.
When the Covid-19 epidemic hit, the most vulnerable people in and from Myanmar were those who have fled conflict and human rights violations. They are living in cramped and squalid conditions without sanitation in camps in Myanmar, and in refugee camps in neighbouring countries. These communities were on the edge of survival even before the pandemic hit.
Advance Myanmar worked quickly to secure funding to help those most vulnerable in this crisis. With misinformation rampant, it was vital that life-saving information and equipment came from sources these communities trusted. This meant the grassroots organisations from these communities that we already knew and worked with.
We were able to swiftly disburse almost £130,000 to reach these vulnerable communities.
- We assisted community organisations helping internally displaced people in conflict affected ethnic states.
- We assisted mobile health teams to travel to remote areas providing healthcare, information and safety equipment such as masks.
- We assisted Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh to set up information communities to provide their fellow refugees with information and equipment to stay safe.
- We assisted community organisations to work with refugees in camps in Thailand providing education on how to stay safe and with reusable facemasks, made by refugees themselves so providing employment at the same time.
Saving lives during the military coup
Since the military coup on 1 February 2021, Advance Myanmar has been able to quickly provide assistance and funding to activists at risk. With the ongoing brutal military crackdown, many activists have had to go into hiding, forced to flee their homes at short notice leaving everything behind.
Advance Myanmar has:
- Provided funding for education events and materials on human rights.
- Provided equipment for communication to help keep human rights activists safe from arrest and ensure they can provide information to the United Nations, media and the world.
- Funded protective clothing for people on protests who were suffering injuries from tear gas and rubber bullets
- Arranging ways for people to escape arrest, reach safe places and funding safe houses.
- Humanitarian assistance for people who have fled violence and arrests with their families.
Advance Myanmar works with organisations to build their capacity, improve organisational skills and provide equipment that will help their effectiveness and independence over the years to come. Our staff have got decades of experience in running successful campaigns to change international policy on Myanmar, and we are transferring these skills back into Myanmar.
We offer training in campaigning and advocacy, which includes campaign strategy planning, media training, how to lobby effectively. We offer ongoing support and mentoring, not just one-off classroom courses; our partners can always reach out to us for support and feedback. We have an experienced team to set up administration, IT, communications and financial systems to ensure organisations are run as efficiently and effectively as possible.
We have also hosted partners in the UK and set up meetings with MPs and British Foreign Office to share skills and experience in campaigning and advocacy. We amplify the voices of our partners internationally, and support their campaigns.
Advance Myanmar also conducts research on human rights issues. This includes research on repressive laws, researching and preparing political prisoner cases to submit to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and research into which international companies are in business with the Burmese military, and hence are funding genocide and crimes against humanity. We work with civil society in Myanmar and various parts of the United Nations in providing information and analysis.
We are beginning a new project producing a range of educational briefing papers, in English, Burmese and other languages of Myanmar, on the working of the international system and international organisations, and how they relate to Myanmar.
Advance Myanmar relies on funding from individual donors and trusts. We do not receive any government funding, which keeps us independent.
Advance Myanmar is a registered charity.