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Assoc. Prof. Dr Silinthone Sacklokham (right) and Ms Rebecca Derry display the signed Memorandum of Understanding.

Laos, US broaden explosive ordnance risk education

Laos and the United States will partner to expand the scope of explosive ordnance risk education in Laos under a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in Vientiane on Monday.
The Ministry of Education and Sports, represented by the Department of International Cooperation, and World Education, Inc. signed the agreement to carry out a project called LAWANG (“Beware”): Expanding the Scope of Explosive Ordnance Risk Education in Laos phase II, funded by the US Department of State.
The project will be implemented by World Education, Inc. in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and Sports and the National Regulatory Authority for UXO/Mine Action.
The MOU was signed by the Director General of the Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Education and Sports, Assoc. Prof. Dr Silinthone Sacklokham, and Lao Country Director of World Education, Inc., Ms Rebecca Derry.
Witnessing the signing were Deputy Minister of Education and Sports Dr Sisouk Vongvichit, US Ambassador to Laos Dr Peter M. Haymond, and all government counterparts including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The goal of the LAWANG project is for children, youth, and people living in high-risk communities in Laos to have the knowledge and skills needed to keep themselves and their families safe from explosive ordnance.
The project identifies four objectives that will target a diverse range of beneficiaries including secondary school students, out-of-school youth and adults attending non-formal education centres, community members, speakers of minority languages, and social media users nationwide to achieve this goal.
Project activities include strengthening explosive ordnance risk education in secondary schools and developing new lessons on the topic that will be integrated into the national curriculum for non-formal education centres.
The project will also build easy-to-use resources such as safety handbooks for community members to use to disseminate explosive ordnance risk education messages in remote communities. Finally, a digital media campaign will be incorporated into all activities to ensure that this messaging is readily available to people in Laos.
Over the last two decades, World Education, Inc. has developed strong and positive relations with the Lao government at the national, provincial and district levels.
World Education, Inc. has focused on sustainable community development through participatory engagement with a focus on rural poverty eradication, microfinance and livelihoods development, UXO mine risk education and victim assistance, innovative approaches to behavioural change in health practices, and support to Lao civil society.
World Education, Inc. has been a key player in the explosive ordnance risk education sector in Laos since 1996, working alongside the Ministry of Education and Sports and the National Regulatory Authority for UXO/Mine Action to ensure that at-risk students and their communities receive explosive ordnance risk education in a variety of formats.

By Times Reporters
 (Latest Update November 15, 2022)


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