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Strengthening young workers in Myanmar

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16 October, 2018Young workers and youth committee members from IndustriALL Global Union trade union affiliates in Myanmar have been trained in leadership and organizing skills at two workshops held in Sagaing and Yangon on 9-10 and 11-12 October respectively. 

The training with youth members of the Mining Workers’ Federation of Myanmar (MWFM) and the Industrial Workers Federation of Myanmar (IWFM) was conducted through IndustriALL’s union-building project in Myanmar, in cooperation with FNV Mondiall and SASK-Finland. The project is aimed enhancing the skills of young leaders and organizers in unions.

Twenty-nine participants (25 men and 4 women) from MWFM participated in the training in Sagaing, including six young union leaders from IWFM. 

Mine workers braved flooding and landslides caused by heavy rains in upper Myanmar to attend the meeting. However, many women members of MWFM were not able to attend due to difficulties and possible dangers in traveling.

Lorna Ferrer, South East Asia regional project coordinator facilitated the training and presented the IndustriALL strategic goals and action plan for youth in the region.  

The workshop helped participants sharpen their organizing skills and deepen their knowledge on leadership techniques and styles. Young workers also participated in group structured learning exercises and team building activities. Profiling of young workers through situational analysis of young workers at respective workplaces, trade unions and in society were also undertaken.  The participants drew up an action plan and organizing targets to increase and involve young workers in union organizing and leadership in trade unions.

IWFM conducted a similar training-workshop in Yangon on 12-13 October 2018. Twenty-seven (13 men and 14 women) young leaders and youth committee members from different member-unions participated.  Together with IWFM president Sister Khaing Zar Aung, young workers who participated in the previous training in Sagaing shared the acquired knowledge and explained what they had learnt.

Training sessions include profiling of young workers in mine and industrial sectors, and awareness on employment condition of young workers both at the national and global levels.

The training is expected to boost youth participation in trade unions in Myanmar through organizing, policy development, capacity building and gender equality among young workers.