Name: Thu Zar Win
Organisation: Sex Workers in Myanmar network
Who we are: SWiM was formally established in April 2011 by 35 sex workers from 10 of the country’s 14 states and regions but its roots date to 2009, when six HIV-positive sex workers participated in the Myanmar Positive Group forum for the first time. In 2010, 15 HIV-positive women participated in the forum and the opportunity to discuss the challenges they faced resulted in the move to form a network. SWiM’s vision is to create an enabling social environment in which sex workers are free from discrimination and harassment and that ensures equal opportunity and does stigmatise those with HIV. Our objectives are to contribute to building capacity among network members, to cooperate on issues involving female sex workers in Myanmar, to advocate for more mean- ingful participation of sex workers at every stage of the HIV/AIDS program related to working women, to take a leading role in reducing discrimination against working women and to work for their rights.
Where we work: We work actively with network members in Yangon and in Mandalay, Myingyan and Kyaukpadaung in Mandalay Region, Shwebo and Monywa in Sagaing Region, Bago and Pyay in Bago Region, Pathein in Ayeyarwady Region, Sittwe in Rakhine State, Lashio and Aungpan in Shan State and Mawlamyine in Mon State.
This is one of our key projects: Our main project focusses on strengthening the network through capacity building
and it is funded by Pyoe Pin [a civil so- ciety strengthening program funded by Britain’s Department for International Development]. We also do community mobilising and advocacy trips.
We are looking for partners because: We need partners who can help provide financial support and technical knowhow.
This new project needs funding: We are planning a life skills training program for our members, which will include components on livelihoods and personal development. Our members are not well educated and they need vocational training to be able to support them- selves if they change jobs.
Find more information at: [email protected]