KWO delighted to anounce the launch of the revised and updated version of ARM (Automatic Response Mechanism)

We pay tribute to the women and girls from Burma who have suffered great injustices,
but whose courage and strength inspire us.

Today, the 5th of April 2014 is KWO Day and we are pleased to announce the launch of the revised and updated version of ARM (Automatic Response Mechanism). ARM is intended to be used as the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to respond to cases of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) in the 7 Karen refugee camps along the Thai-Burma border. The information and advice in ARM will be useful for those involved in SGBV cases: the victim, her family and friends, organisations and structures in our community that give services or support, national and international organisations that give services or support to refugees.

ARM SOP  English Version ( Cover) ARM SOP  English Version Cover

The original ARM was released in 2003 as a document that gives advice and guidance to support women and girls who have suffered sexual or physical violence. Women recognized that there was a need to give guidance to those people who support victims in how they should behave so that the victim is not blamed, and so that if she reports her case, it is taken seriously and she is treated with respect and fairness.

ARM is for all organisations and structures in our community that give services or support to victims of SGBV. And it is for all national (Thai) and international organisations that give services or support to refugees. The steps in ARM help everyone know what to do, how to do it, and when to do it.

ARM is also especially for the victims of violence. ARM is “victim-centered” which means in every part, the victim and her needs, should be at the heart of all actions and be the most important consideration. The steps in ARM give information about many of the things that might happen when an SGBV case is reported by the victim. Who can do what, and when they can do it. The victim should read ARM so she understands, is well-informed about options and rights, will know more about what to expect, and finally can make better decisions for herself.

And ARM is for the family and friends of a victim, those who are providing support, so they too will know more about what might happen and how to give better support.

We hope that ARM will help any victim make better decisions for herself. We hope it will help all people involved to provide better support and services.

ARM has been produced in 3 languages: Karen, Burmese and English. We have printed 1,000 copies in Karen and 500 copies in Burmese. If you would like to access the English version, you can down load it from this website, You will find the Karen and Burmese versions here too.

We will distribute printed copies of the Karen and Burmese language versions to the communities in the 7 refugee camps during March and April 2014. In addition, we will distribute a limited number of copies to all NGOs, CBOs and UN agencies that are involved with refugees in SGBV response and prevention.

KWO and partners will be conducting training on how to use ARM in all camps in the coming months. We welcome all those individuals and organisations that want to see better co-ordination in the response to SGBV to join us, participate in training, and learn what you can do and what others can do.

If you have questions or comments please contact KWO.

Karen Version

ARM/SOP Karen Version

ARM/SOP English Version 

ARM/SOP Burmese Version

Published by Karen Women Organisation

The Karen Women Organisation was formed in 1949 and has a membership of over 64,100 women. KWO is a community-based organisation of Karen women working in development and relief in the refugee camps on the Thai border and with IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) and women inside Burma. Since our formation in 1949 we have expanded our focus from one of purely social welfare to try to encourage an awareness of Women's Rights and to promote women’s participation in the community decision making and political processes. The objectives of the KWO  To assist women in the endeavour to be free from all forms of oppression.  To promote and empower women in all spheres of life, including education and general living standards.  To encourage women to participate in the struggle for freedom, democracy and equality.  To develop women's knowledge, ability and skills, including political and organizational skills.  To achieve the rights of women and equal status with men.  To promote and maintain Karen culture and traditions.  To improve the well-being of women and children and to increase their access to adequate health, education and welfare services. KWO aims to empower women through offering various capacity building trainings to teach skills, build confidence and create new opportunities so that women will be better able to solve problems. We are working hard to educate ourselves and our communities so that we can work more effectively and advocate for our struggle on the international stage. We believe that women’s contribution is an essential factor in the peace-building and national reconciliation processes of Burma.

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