Naw Hay Bhee Paw is young but a strong leader. She has been a life skills session facilitator since the beginning of the project because the people around her encouraged her to take on this role. They thought that she would learn a lot and be able to lead the youth into doing something important.

“Because I am a teacher in my village, people around often ask me to take charge. I am young, but people listen to me because I am clear and I want the best for them. I enjoy being a facilitator because I know that I am helping. I see that women are improving in feeling less sad and concentrating on other things than troubles at home or with money. The activities help them with stress, but the discussions are where they share. This is not easy, but they do it. It is my job to ensure that they understand the information but also that they express themselves. They are not used to people encouraging them to do this and it can be uncomfortable. However, they always seem happy afterwards.”

Attract youth to participate

Naw Hay Bhee Paw has contributed not only her time and enthusiasm to the programme, she has also been able to attract youth to participate. This is not easy as the young people are busy with school followed by work. Their schedule is less flexible. However, she has shared with them what she thinks is important about the programme and how it can help. Now in her sessions there are 10 youth who come when they can. She has decided to work on recruiting more youth in different villages when she has the time.

Additional activities for young people

She observes that the youth easily participate in the activities and sports, but the discussions are difficult. They do not easily speak up and feel shy with the adults. They are slow to share their stories and emotions. She feels that the youth should participate with the adults, but that there could be additional activities for them where they can communicate more easily. The most popular thing would be singing as an outlet and a learning tool.

Future prospects

On a personal level, Naw Hay Bhee Paw also benefits from the life skills sessions, particularly when working on strengths and confidence. She already feels established as a teacher, but the training in the sessions and the training for the facilitators has increased her participation in the community. She feels more comfortable taking charge and now thinks about the future – what she could do and if she wants to be one of the village authorities in the coming years.