grantees » Nang Shining

Nang Shining, Thailand

Shining is young Shan woman passionate about ethical and sustainable river management with a heart-warming smile. Growing up, she was always interested in social work, but in Myanmar “the only way I could do social work was through education and teaching, helping students to think in a different way”. She moved to Thailand where she became interested in the environment. As an Alumni of Earthrights International School, she learnt about engaged advocacy for equitable development. She used her knowledge and skills to complete her Master’s thesis entitled: “Evaluating the Implementation of Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) International’s Corporate Social Responsibility Policy for the Hat Gyi Dam Project on the Salween River, Myanmar.”

Shining used the JWH initiative grant for intensive English lessons and an IELTS test, granting her entry to a Master’s degree. It then funded her fourth semester to complete her thesis and fieldwork in 3 riverside communities adversely affected by a hydroelectric dam in the Mae Hong Son province, Thailand.  ”By conducting interviews with almost a hundred people, I gained lots of knowledge on the nature of Corporate Social Responsibilities and other relevant regulations to the trans-boundary cooperation, as well as public-speaking and negotiating skills.”  Shining is surprised and proud of herself:Without the JWH grant, I would never have been able to do as good a job as I did”. She continues to actively communicate and travel to her host villages, and encourages cross-cultural communication, often acting as translator. She aims to write articles for environmental human rights advocacy, effectively filling a gap in the information available to those directly affected by river management. Today Shining is again working with the Earthrights International School, using all of her skills as an educator, translator and environmental activist. A Care-and-Share attitude is most important. If we have good teamwork, we can make good projects for our students, and from the students it goes to the community.” She dreams of returning to her native Myanmar to develop the currently non-existent environmental impact assessment policy for development, focusing on foreign investments at the policy-making level.

Nominated by

Sabrina Gyorvary,  Earth Rights international,  Thailand.