Projects for Peace: The Vision of Kathryn W. Davis

"My challenge to you is to bring about a mind-set of preparing for peace, instead of preparing for war."

One Month Journalist Training for Media Forces

Project #
Middlebury College
  • Htar Htar Yu
  • Simone Zhang

As a native of Burma, Htar Htar Yu dreams of a time when she might return to her homeland and find a democratic and free society. She and her classmate Simone Zhang share the belief that one important step in that direction is a trained media reporting on conditions in Burma to the rest of the world. Their project was a four-week journalism training workshop for young Burmese held in Mae Sot, Thailand on the Burma border. Six news groups were invited to send two or three participants to the workshop, and all were native Burmese, representing many of the ethnic backgrounds of the country.

Led by professionals from the BBC and Radio Free Asia, classes were held daily for several weeks. The final week was devoted to fieldwork and evaluations. At the end of the sessions, participants were able to research, conduct interviews, and report the news. The immediate consequence of this training is that there will be 15 more Burmese with basic skills to inform the world of the realities of life in Burma. With the basic training they received, these reporters can join
forces to help the people of Burma, Burmese refugees in Thailand, Burmese abroad, and the rest of the world obtain accurate news. A stronger media will lead to awareness and knowledge, then to understanding, and, hopefully, ultimately to peace for the people of Burma.