Networking

Bo San, a focal person from Ma-Hlaing region
Bo San, a focal person from Ma-Hlaing region is discussing in quarterly meeting of LGBT Rights Network (Myanmar).

Colors Rainbow regularly partners with national, regional, and international stakeholders to strengthen the human rights and LGBT rights movements in Myanmar and around the world.

Colors Rainbow also plays a central role in coordinating LGBT civil society to implement a wide range of rights-based programs and serves as the secretariat of the continuously expanding Myanmar LGBT Rights Network, which is currently comprised of LGBT CBOs from 25 areas across Myanmar, including Kachin, Shan and Mon states and all divisions.

The network structure includes three working groups (advocacy, capacity building, and public awareness) with 4-6 members in each, as well as geographic focal points responsible for supporting community-driven activities to support and address local issues. A four-member advisory board and nine-member legal advisory board provide support to Colors Rainbow and the network as a whole. The organizations that make up the LGBT Rights Network form the foundation of Colors Rainbow’s local partners in Myanmar and the strong platform by which advocacy strategies and initiatives are formed and implemented.  Most notably, CRB and network members jointly submitted a stakeholder report for the Universal Periodic Review in 2014 calling for the protection of LGBT rights in Myanmar.

Networking with Other Allied groups

Colors Rainbow has taken part in several regional advocacy and networking initiatives over the years, including strong participation in the ASEAN Civil Society Conference/ASEAN Peoples’ Forum (ACSC/APF) SOGIE Caucus and the 2013 International Lesbian and Gay Association – Asia Conference. CRB has built trust with the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission (MNHRC) since 2013. In addition, CRB was able to meet with Ms. Yang Hee Lee, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, and provided information on updated LGBT issues in Myanmar. CRB and Myanmar LGBT Rights Network jointly submitted to the UN Universal Periodic Review regarding the protection of the rights LGBT persons by the aid of Kailidscope (Australia) and EQMM

In addition, Colors Rainbow is a member of the Gender Equality Network (GEN) and is currently working with the following organizations in southern Myanmar: MSF; World Vision; Dawei Development Association; Dawei Watch Foundation; Tavoy Student Union; Rays of Light; Dawei Youth Foundation; Future Light; Myeik LGBT group and Kawthaung LGBT group.  These collaborations call for the inclusion of LGBT rights in the general human rights movement and for more human rights-based approaches incorporated in health and development organizations’work.