Education and Arts

ACU Thai-Burma Program

Graduates celebrating

Giving Burmese refugees a university education

The situation of refugees, forced migrants and internally displaced people is one of the greatest humanitarian challenges facing humankind. Burma's authoritarian state has produced the world's longest running civil war. Burmese fleeing this repressive regime have been sectioned into nine camps scattered along the border with Thailand. Even though reforms have begun in Burma, it is unlikely the people in the camps will return home soon.

Some of our Burmese students, now in their twenties, were born in these camps where primary and secondary education is provided by UNHCR and non-government organisations, but there is no opportunity for bright, young refugees to have access to internationally recognised qualifications in higher education.

Enter the ACU Thai-Burma Program: ACU partners with universities from the US and Canada to provide tertiary education to these intelligent, young refugees. The program offers a course taught through a combination of online and face-to-face lessons.

The graduates of the program who have been mostly resettled in Australia, Canada or the US were able to be accepted into university degree programs on the basis of their ACU qualification.

For the students, the program has meant not just jobs or a pathway to degree courses but transformation. Through the critical thinking that academic work demands, they have been led to a belief in peaceful, political negotiation to end the violence in their homeland.

Become a valued supporter of the program and make a difference to these refugee's lives.

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