For decades, girls and women—particularly ethnic women—have been the target of sexual and other forms of violence at the hands of the military regime. K’nyaw Paw aims to eliminate violence against women in Burma through empowering women and giving direct assistance to women who suffer from violence. She also documents cases of violations against women.
K’nyaw Paw was born in Thailand and as a young child grew up in a refugee camp. Her family was forced to flee their home in order to escape persecution. The family joined approximately 110,000 Karen people now living inside seven refugee camps that run the length of the Thai- Burma border. Until recently, K’nyaw Paw still sent candles back to her brothers in the refugee camps so they could study at night.
In 1999, K’nyaw Paw began working with the Karen Women’s Organization. This is a community-based organization of Karen women working in development and relief in the refugee camps on the Thai border. As part of her work, K’nyaw Paw has been responsible for training both adult and youth groups in leadership and human rights, assisting in funding proposal and report writing, liaising with international sponsors and translating for international guests.
K’nyaw Paw is also closely involved with the Karen Young Women’s Leadership School, one of the few advanced schooling opportunities for young women refugees on the Thai-Burma border.
K’nyaw Paw now serves on the executive committee of the both the Karen Women’s Organization and the Women’s League of Burma. In this capacity, she has attended UN Human Rights Council and the Commission on the Status of Women meetings to raise concerns about situation for women and indigenous and refugee rights in Burma and along the border.
K’nyaw Paw Nimrod combines a rare mix of grassroots awareness with an ability to network effectively on behalf of her people at the international level. She is part of a new generation of women from Burma—one that is that is determined to bring true democracy to Burma and improve the lives of women.