People’s College

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People’s College trains civil society organisations, students, and religious/local leaders in the areas of peace and democracy, in southern Thailand.

People’s College works as a facilitator and trainer in peace and democracy work for civil society organisations, students, and religious and local leaders in southern Thailand. Its mission is to organise short and long-term trainings for other civil society organisations on issues regarding democracy, politics and peace in Patani/Deep South.

Since 2010, the organisation has trained NGOs, activists, and human right defenders in peace and democracy, and helped them apply their knowledge. People's College has a particular focus on young people by training the future leaders of southern Thailand. The lecturers of the training programmes are peace experts and academics from Thailand, as well as representatives from international NGOs, government representatives, and security officials.

The organisation also meets regularly with diplomatic representatives and international organisations, to provide updates on the situation in the region.

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Activities for 2015-16

  • The Center for Democratic studies has opened a curriculum on Local Leaders for Peace. There are 2 groups, with 35 trainees per group. The curriculum focuses on building the knowledge of local leaders to attract the participation of the community in peace processes.
  • The Center for Conflict Studies has opened a training on a Peace Building Strategic Plan. There are 70 trainees. The program aims to help trainees develop the strategy of their organisation and have the ability to work with others.
  • The Department of the Consulate has opened a high certificate program on Peace Mediation Processes. There are 15 trainees who specialize in peace mediation.
  • The Center for Research and Development has developed a research program on the need to develop CSO involvement in peace processes in Patani/Deep South
  • An activity called 'Insider Talks' works to find new ways of building peace in Patani. Highlights of the activity include a talk show and debates. The plan is to establish forums on the important issues, and attract insiders to take part and support peace work in Patani together in the future.

People's College recently organised a special speech given by Professor Dr. Kamarulzaman Askandar from University Malaysia Sabah, a coordinator of the Southeast Asia Conflict Studies Network. This took place on 9th July 2015. He spoke on the topic of freedom and the future direction of Patani. Participants included many representatives from the civil society sector and many different ethnic groups.

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Major achievements

  1. Developed a peace and democracy curriculum for NGOs and young people.
  2. Built a student network curriculum for working together on peace at the strategic level.
  3. Established youth network.
  4. Expanded access to peace studies for the community.
  5. Survey research about NGOs and people in the region

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