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ANNUAL REPORT 2014


TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction ............................................................................................................ Page 3 Projects and Numbers ........................................................................................... Page 4 Kler Deh High School phase I - High School ..............................................

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Kler Deh High School phase I - Toilets for School .......................................

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Kler Deh High School phase I - Dormitories, Bathroom and Toilets .............

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Grace Garden phase II - Dormitory ............................................................

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Mae Tari - Kitchen and Bathroom + Landscape Reinforcement ...................

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Solar Electricity, Water Access and Water Purification Projects ....................

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Support Projects .........................................................................................

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Publications ...................................................................................................

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Seminaries and Exhibitions ............................................................................. Page 15 “Think Global, Build Social” Exhibition and Seminar, Vienna .....................

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“SoN, Designers on Site”, Exhibition and Seminar, Helsinki Design Week ..

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Pecha Kucha vol. 31, Oslo ..........................................................................

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MOJ Memorial Lecture, Shool of Architecture, University of Virginia ..........

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The XIX Quito Pan-American Architecture Biennial (BAQ 2014), Quito ......

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Results and Budgets ........................................................................................ Page 18

Prospects 2015 ............................................................................................... Page 21 Maw Kwee

Kler Deh

Mae Tari Noh Bo Mae Moei National tional Park

Kler Deh Highschool 2014

Maw Kwee Primary School 2011/2012

Tha Song Yang District y M

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Kler Deh Dormitories 2014

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THAILAND

Mae Tari Dormitory 2013

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Mae Ramat District

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Noh Bo Academy School 2011

Mae Tari Kitchen, Bath, Toilets 2014

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BURMA y

CDC Dormitories 2012 Grace Garden Ed-Center 2013

Projects by Gyaw Gyaw 2009 - 2014

Grace Garden Dormitory 2013

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10 km

20 km

30 km

40 km

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Mae So t s Myawaddi

MTC Trainingcenter 2011/2012 Map by Google

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INTRODUCTION

Gyaw Gyaw 2014: Top left: Peter, Paw Eh Wah, Ste Pha, Ole, See Da Pha. Bottom left: Phillipa, Line/Nee Ga Mwee, Pah Me, Saw Dee, Oo Klo .

2014 has been a very good and productive year for Gyaw Gyaw. We have taken small steps forward, both as individuals and as an organization. We have completed a number of projects, both big and small, on both sides of the Thai/Burma border. This year we have also been active on the international architectural stage. We were presented in Boundaries, an international architecture magazine, and throughout the year we have presented our work at the exhibitions “Think Global, Build Social” in Vienna, “SoN, Designers on Site” at Helsinki Design Week in Finland, “The XIX Quito PanAmerican Architecture Biennial” in Quito, Ecuador, Pecha Kucha vol 31 in Oslo, and gave the MOJ Memorial Lecture at the University of Virginia’s School of Architecture in the United States. Updates and presentations for sponsors and collaborators have also taken place, and we appreciate all the nice and constructive feedback from everyone. We have also strengthened the organization administratively by adding Ole Michelsen as finance manager. We reorganized our internal structure by giving everyone key responsibilities and more specific jobs. The team responded with enthusiasm, increased dedication, and lots of hard work. The organization is as solid and happy as ever. During 2014 we have continued to develop our partnership with Solbakken, a local organization supplying water and electricity to our projects. They are very good partners who share our philosophy and bring new ideas and knowledge to our organization. We hope to continue the good partnership with them in the coming years. Solid backing from our long term sponsors who also understand our philosophy and are committed to our cause gives us the necessary stability and flexibility. We feel that we are moving in the right direction, and have big expectations for 2015 and the years to come. Line Ramstad, Director Page 3


PROJECTS AND NUMBERS •

All amounts are indicated in Norwegian Kroner. (NOK) Average conversion rate for 2014 was 493 THB/ 100 NOK.

Actual project costs may vary due to currency exchange rate fluctuation.

For 2015 budget exchange rate at 31.12.2014. The conversion rate at the time was 423 THB/ 100 NOK

Kler Deh High School phase I - High School

Project budget: 104.415,- NOK Project costs: 168.498,- NOK* Size: 200 sqare meters. 3 classrooms / 48 square meters each Materials: Load-bearing adobe walls on concrete foundation. Insulated tin roof. Timberframed doors and windows with traditional bamboo plaiting. Design/implementation: Gyaw Gyaw Project start: February 2014 Project finished: July 2014 * Projects costs also includes materials for installation of solar electricity, and water pump/water purification. This was not a part of the original cost estimate. Without these additional costs, the total project cost would have been 133.841,The other main reason for overrunning the budget was time. The project was budgeted to take 3 months, but a combination of re-arranged schedule, the political situation who forced us to take a break, and improvements along the way, made it 5 months from project start to completion.

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The location of the school is of great historically significance on the Burmese side of the border. The whole village was razed and burned to the ground by the Burmese army first in 1984 and then again in 1996. The village, which had both schools and a hospital was abandoned after the last attack, and the surviving Karen population fled across the border to the refugee camps on the Thai side. The trenches, only meters behind the school building, is a daily reminder of the heavy fighting that took place in the area just a few years ago. Kler Deh High School is the first high school in the area and is a vital step towards progress, reconciliation, and the rebuilding of the community. The project started with a community meeting with the purpose of assessing the situation of the village, promoting an open-minded and equal discussion, and exchanging ideas and concerns. This was an important and exciting step towards a better understanding of democracy as all aspects of the society were represented, and the result was a common base for further discussions. Discussions are in general rare in Karen communities, as the social structure is in general hierarchical, and one rarely questions a leaders point of view. This works well in a military community, but the transition towards a civil community demands a different approach. The inclusion of all parties involved and the ongoing discussions pertaining to the project is a process we feel is extremely important as it empowers the individual and the community. The school is withdrawn from the riverside, placed beautifully at the bottom of a hill with a stunning view across the river to the mountains of Thailand. The property is slightly sloping in two directions, both towards the river and towards the new village settlement. The building follows the incline of the landscape, and is faced in a southwest-northeast direction for better light conditions and airflow through the building. As with most of Gyaw Gyaw’s projects, the walls are made of adobe bricks from the building site and placed on a reinforced concrete slab. The thick walls facing south help keep indoor temperatures stable in the heat of the day. The windows facing northeast are larger, allowing for more natural light while the southeast windows are smaller to prevent direct sunlight. The roof is made of insulated tin, on top of a timber construction, and is the only material that is not locally produced, but purchased in the neighboring city of Mae Sot.

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Kler Deh High School, northfacing facade with larger windows. The classrooms follow the incline of the slope, adjusting the building carefully to the landscape.

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Kler Deh High School, southfacing facade with smaller windows keeping direct sunlight out.

Kler Deh High School, classroom. Detail from northfacing windows.

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Kler Deh High School phase I - Toilets for School

Project budget: 9.940,- NOK Project cost: 13.990,- NOK Size: 18 square meters. 3 toilets in close proximity to the school. Design/implementation: Gyaw Gyaw Materials: Concrete slab, timber construction, brick and bamboo walls, tin roof. Project start: July 2014 ( 2 weeks project) Project finished: July 2014

Traditional bamboo plaiting techniques used as front walls and windows. Locals from kler Deh contributing with labor and knowledge.

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Kler Deh High School phase I - Dormitories, Bathroom and Toilets

Project budget: Project costs: Size: Design/implementation: Materials: Project start: Project finished:

128.367,- NOK 142.364,- NOK* 340 square meters / 4 dormitories/18 students in each. Agora Architects /redesigned and implemented by Gyaw Gyaw** Bamboo, timber, insulated tin roof. November 2014 February 2015***

* Amount spent on this project in 2014. Some of the final cost will be covered in the budget for 2015. We decided to use local plaiting techniques for all front facades. This increased the construction time, but it is functional, beautiful and an important contribution to preserve local traditions. A miscommunication on the building site also resulted in use of more timber then budgeted. ** Built as temporary dormitories with Agora in MTC Training Center in 2012. Adjusted and developed by Gyaw Gyaw based on feedback from users to make it more functional, robust, and long lasting. *** Estimated date of completion

The original idea of the design was from the temporary dormitories at CDC school in Mae Sot, constructed by Gyaw Gyaw in collaboration with Agora Architects in 2012. Feedback from the users have been taken into consideration to further improve the functionality of the design. The dormitories in Kler Deh are not temporary. We used more solid materials such as timber flooring in the walkway instead of bamboo and an insulated tin roof instead of leaves or grass. The construction is elevated to increase airflow and natural ventilation through the building. Each dormitory consist of 6 rooms with living space for 3 students in each. In total there are living space for 72 students in the 4 dormitories. Adjacent to the dormitories we constructed toilets and traditional showers. The bathrooms are placed behind the dormitories to secure privacy for the students. The pits where the soil for adobe production is dug is multifunctional as it also doubles as the septic system for the toilets. Surrounding the drainage for the bathrooms and the adobe pit, banana threes are in abundance. Banana trees function as a natural filter, rapidly absorbing the grey water run-off from the showers and toilets. Page 9


Grace Garden phase II - Dormitory

Project budget: 45.151,- NOK* Project cost: 50.257,- NOK Size: 60 square meters Design/implementation: Gyaw Gyaw Materials: Concrete slab, load-bearing adobe walls, timber construction, plaited bamboo doors and windows, insulated tin roof. Project start: 16.01.2014 Project finished: 25.05.2014 * Gyaw Gyaw was contracted by BGET (Border Green Energy Team) to design and build the dormitories. BGET paid Gyaw Gyaw 43.650,- as a contracted partner. Gyaw Gyaw covered the difference (6.607,- NOK) between the actual costs and the contracted amount. The overrun is due to an additional surface water drainage, not originally budgeted.

In 2013 we completed the Grace Garden Sustainable Learning Center. In 2014 we built dormitories adjacent to the learning center. Gyaw Gyaw was contracted by the Thai NGO Border Green Energy Team (BGET) to complete the building. The dormitories are financed by UNESCO and Gyaw Gyaw was paid 200.000 baht for the job. The dormitories are built of load-bearing adobe walls on a concrete slab. The building follows the sloped landscape and has stairs that cascade down towards an inner garden that lies in-between the two buildings. The backwall is curved, creating a rather closed back towards the sun and the outer garden. In front, bamboo walls divide the rooms and the stairs. The stairs also function as a hangout area, fully shaded by the overhanging roof. Windows and doors are based on the same principles as the doors in Grace Garden, phase I, traditional plaited bamboo techniques, framed and used in the same way. The dormitory can house up to 20 students. At the moment 9 students from Mae La Refugee Camp are studying sustainable and ecological farming at the learning center.

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Mae Tari - Kitchen and Bathroom + Landscape Reinforcement

Project budget: Project costs: Size: Design/implementation: Materials: Project start: Project finished:

21.829,- NOK 63.947,- NOK* Approximately 40 square meters + 15 meter reinforcement Gyaw Gyaw + Solbakken Timber construction, burned adobe bricks, tin roof. River stons and concrete. Pipes and water filtration + electric wire and light bulbs. Jan. 2014 Oct. 2014

*Notes to project cost: With contribution from newly founded organization, Solbakken, we had the opportunity to provide the dormitory with electricity and drinking water. The members of Solbakken have long experience from electricity and water in the border area, and what they provide is something we have wanted to include in our projects for a long time. We agreed to split the costs for this project, and material costs for water filtration and electricity (41 000 baht = 8 300 NOK) is included in our project costs. Without these, the total project cost would have been 55 647,- NOK After a heavy rain in the start of the rainy season, the slope next to the dormitory slid. There was never any risk for the building, but we decided to put extra reinforcements to the landscape. 2 people worked for several weeks reinforcing the slope with additional walls in concrete, riverstones and iron. We are very happy with the final result, but concrete and iron is expensive, and we therefore exceeded the budget on this project.

Design and construction of the dormitory in 2013 were done in close collaboration with the church in charge and the students parents. It was a positive and rewarding process for all included parties. And we were happy to expand our contribution with a kitchen and traditional bathrooms for the students as well. The site is steep and narrow, and requires additional attention to landslides, rainwater, and general surface water concerns. This in combination with mplementation in rainy season, gave us new and rewarding challenges concerning traditional construction and materials available in the area. The buildings are placed on a natural plateau, but with additional forces from the building itself and superfluous digging by parents eager to help, we also put a great effort into support walls, using riverstones and concrete as walls to keep the soil stable. Page 11


Solar Electricity, Water Access and Water Purification Projects

Solbakken: Htoot Htoot, Em and Nick.

Water purification installed by Solbakken for the dormitory in Mae Tari

Our focus has always been on sustainable architecture, and the democratic process towards a final result everyone can be happy with. For maximum function of a community building, supplying clean drinking water and electricity is imperative. We have therefore teamed up with Solbakken, a local organization that supplies water and solar power to our projects. Solbakken complements our work and share our values and philosophy. The small organization, that consist of Nick, Em and Htoot Htoot, have installed water and solar power to our school in Kler Deh, and provided water and electricity in the dormitories in Mae Tari. They have also installed a solar panel in the primary school in Maw Kwee, an addition to a project we finished in 2012. The companionship with them has been a success in 2014, and we look forward to continue to work closely with Solbakken in the years to come. Page 12


Support Projects - Rice and Mosquito Nets Since 2012, Gyaw Gyaw in close partnership with the Norwegian Football Club Vestkysten, (VSK) has provided rice to a primary school in the small refugee mountain village of Maw Kwee. A large number of the children come from surrounding villages and live at the school during the school year. Due to a lack of access to fertile land, the village is not capable of growing its own rice. A proper and healthy diet is of vital importance for a good learning process, so this small, but important contribution makes life in the mountain village much better for the children. VSK is in charge of this project and Gyaw Gyaw is facilitating it, contributing with purchase and delivery. In October 2014, we made the same agreement for the dormitories in Mae Tari. In 2014 this project provided 7.6 metric tons of rice for a total cost of 21.985,- NOK. VSK also ran a Christmas gift card campaign in December 2014. 14.000,- NOK was raised to buy mosquito net. 1.571,- NOK was spent for mosquito net for remote villages on both side of the border, the rest of the money will be spent exclusively for mosquito nets in 2015 Other support projects includes work permit cards for Gyaw Gyaw members to make them able to travel without the risk of harassment from the Thai police on the border, school uniforms for the children at Safe Haven orphanage, support to Noh Bo village, and the local monastery. Total amount spent on support projects in our local community in 2014:

28.670,- NOK

We will continue in 2015 to make these small but important contributions for our local community.

Support projects - Safe Haven Orphanage Since Line first arrived on the border, Tasanee Keereepraneed has been an important ally and friend. She is running Safe Haven Orphanage, in Mae Tawor, an hour drive north of Noh Bo. Tasanee is “big mum� for 63 children, ranging from 5 months to 18 years in her care. A sponsor agreement with friends, family and acquaintances in Norway has been made to support the orphanage. This is the only regular income the orphanage has. Thanks to 49 faithful private donors, contributing with 200,- to 400,- NOK pr month, the children at the orphanage can get the care they deserve. Total amount transferred from Gyaw Gyaw to Safe Haven Orphanage in 2014:

127.800,- NOK Page 13


PUBLICATIONS Boundaries

In the December edition of the international architecture magazine Boundaries we were featured over 8 pages. The edition focused on architecture in a humanitarian perspective, and we were allowed to tell the whole story behind our work and philosophy. We have been reluctant to publish our work in magazines of this style before, but Boundaries let us tell about the different aspects of development work that is often neglected. Aspects that we feel is of vital importance to succeed in this field. Our approach is not necessary transferable to every corner of the world, but some aspects of our philosophy is. The importance of broad alliances and coalitions within the local community, and a bottom-up approach building infrastructure based on local needs has shown to be a successful approach we are eager to share. We are very happy about the cooperation with the chief editor Luca Sampò, and the final result presenting our organization and the people behind the way we see it every day. Page 14


SEMINARIES AND EXHIBITIONS All expences for seminaries and exhibitions are covered by the organizers. Gyaw Gyaw does not have any expences covering these events.

“Think Global, Build Social” Exhibition and Seminar, Vienna, Austria. Exhibition: Think Global, Build Social Seminar: Think Global, Act Social! Lecture: Gyaw Gyaw, sustainable architecture among Karen migrants and refugees on the border between Thailand and Burma. Date: 14. March 2014 Place: AzW - Architectur Zentrum Wien Audience: Approximately 200 Publications: Arch+ 211/212 Think Global, Build Social! The “Think Global, Build Social!” seminar and exhibition in Vienna, Austria was first held in Frankfurt, Germany in 2013. The event aims to address issues concerning contemporary architecture’s social responsibility. The exhibition consisted of 22 example projects created with a minimum financial expenditure and a great deal of initiative and creativity. Gyaw Gyaw in cooperation with Agora Architects were represented in fruitful discussions about contemporary architecture and its role in the developing world.

“SoN, Designers on Site”, Exhibition and Seminar, Helsinki Design Week, Finland Exhibition: SoN, Designers on Site Seminar: SoN, Designers on Site Lecture: Building on the Thai-Burmese Border Date: 6. September 2014 Place: Helsinki Design Week, Teurastamo Audience: Approximately 80 Publications: Exhibition materials

The South of North (SoN) exhibition at Helsinki Design Week, was a presentation of 12 Nordic architects designing and building projects in the developing world or in poorer regions of the west. The aim of the exhibition was to highlight an emerging trend: Architectural practices committed to promoting ecological and social sustainable architecture.

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Pecha Kucha vol. 31, Oslo Presentation: Pecha Kucha Oslo, vol. 31 Lecture: Gyaw Gyaw: Architecture, Sustainability, Empowerment Date: 8. October 2014 Place: DogA, Oslo Audience: Approximately 600 Publications: http://www.aftenposten.no/webtv/#!/video/20630/ pecha-kucha-du-blir-ikke-snekker-av-en-12-timers- flytur Pecha Kutcha is a newer presentation format limited to 20 PowerPoint slides shown for 20 seconds each. Line presented our work in Oslo, Norway in October 2014. The format is challenging, and demands a lot of preparation, but Line managed to present 6 years of work in 6 minutes, an enormous accomplishment by someone who likes to talk a lot! The whole presentation can be seen at Aftenposten tv: Pecha Kucha/ Du blir ikke snekker av en 12 timers flytur.

MOJ Memorial Lecture, Shool of Architecture, University of Virginia, USA Presentation: MOJ Memorial Lecture Lecture: Gyaw Gyaw: Sustainable Architecture and Development Work among Karen Migrants on the Thai/Burma Border Date: 15. September 2014 Place: School of Architecture, University of Virginia, USA Audience: Approximately 470 Publications: http://dirt.asla.org/2014/10/13/line-ramstads-democ racy-through-design/ In memory of Michael Owen Jones, a former architect student who passed away just after his graduation, young design professionals have since 1993 been invited to the School of Architecture at the University of Virginia to hold an annual lecture about their work. In 2014 Line Ramstad was invited to hold an inspirational lecture about the work and philosophy of Gyaw Gyaw. She was also included at the School of Architectures daily life and stayed at the campus for 4 days, discussing humanitarian architecture with the staff and students.

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The XIX Quito Pan-American Architecture Biennial (BAQ 2014), Quito, Ecuador. Conference: BAQ 2014 Lecture: Gyaw Gyaw Date: 17. - 21. November 2014 Place: Quito, Ecuador Audience: Approximately 3500 Publications: Baq 2014 Catalogue

The Pan-American Architecture Biennal is one of the largest and most important architecture events in South America and has been organized every second year since 1978. The 5 days long event provides a platform for discussions, exchange of knowledge and concepts, and aims to give a statement of current international trends in the world of architecture. The biennial attracts attention from the world of architecture and 18 international architects were present; giving lectures about their work and philosophy. The theme of the 2014 biennial was “From the house to the city, from the city to the house”, and there were 5 sub-categories, one for each day. Line represented Gyaw Gyaw, under the theme “From Individual to Community”, addressing topics such as how to build citizenship from social interest, social inclusion and the right to be in the community/the community as a social construct. Gyaw Gyaw`s work and philosophy attracted recognition and applause from the more than 3500 attendants who got to know the whole team of Gyaw Gyaw during Lines enthusiastic 60 minute presentation.

The Biennial also hosted a competition for projects that have been completed in the last 4 years. Line was invited to be a member of the jury in the categry: “Social Habitat and Development” Page 17


RESULTS AND BUDGETS Final Result 2014 Income 2014 Expences 2014

490 079 577 079

Net Income

- 87 000

Cash Flow 2014

Debit

559 588 490 079

Financial Balance 01.01.2014 Income 2014 Expenses 2014 Financial Balance 01.01.2015

Income 2014

Credit

577 079 472 588

Result 2013

Result 2014 Budget 2015

Corporate Sponsorships Regular Monthly Private Donors Lump Sum Private Donations Project Income Interest Rate Income Other Income Loan

350 804 15 000 31 750 132 008 7 136 29 650 0

311 000 21 300 54 666 40 540 11 889 47 185 3 500

360 000 25 000 25 000 0 8000 20 000 0

Total Income 2014

566 348

490 079

438 000

Expenses 2014 Project Expenses Administration Support of Local Community Social Benefits Capital Expenditures Flight Tickets Other Expenses

419 699 76 520 28 670 8 845 35 591 6 875 879

Total Expenses 2014

577 079

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Administration: Administrative costs include transportation, car repairs, visa renewals, office rent, office equipment, internet, telephone and salaries for people employed in the administration. Salary: Daily salary in 2014 was 65,- NOK for every member of Gyaw Gyaw. Day labour was paid approx. 40,- NOK/day. We will continue our philosophy of a completely flat wage structure. For 2015 we have mutually agreed to raise salaries to 69,- NOK/day, and we have also introduced a social security system. Every member of the team, will get 4,- NOK extra for every day they work, that will be paid in full August 1st. This is to secure money for supporting families during the holiday. Capital expenditures: Includes purchases of new computer equipment, camera equipment, a generator and general tools for the building sites. Flight tickets: Gyaw Gyaw covers round-trip flight ticket to Norway for Line every year. Other Expenses: Includes financial cost of transferring money.

Project Expenses 2014 Materials Salaries Administration Transportation Food

256 855 121 053 401 8 772 32 618

Total Project Expenses 2014

419 699

Balance Sheet 2014 Current Assets Bank Deposit Cash Fixed Assets Vehicles Machinery Computer and Camera Equipment Computer Software Other Fixed Assets Total Assets

Assets 469 532 3 056

Liability and Equity 3 500 Short Term Debt 623 783 Equity

75 352 33 099 42 300 3 474 469 627 283

627 283 Liability and Equity

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Comments to the Result During 2014 the Norwegian Kroner depreciated 30 % from 01.01.2014 to 01.01.2015 compared to Thai Baht. Since we have our income in Norwegian currency, and expenses in Thai Baht, we are vulnerable to international exchange rate fluctuations. The significant NOK depreciation is the main reasons why we spent more money than we raised in 2014. In the future it is our goal to provide solar energy and water purification systems to all our projects that need it, and this element will increase the project costs further. We also see a general price increase in materials that also affects our project costs. The introduction of a system of social benefits for all people employed by Gyaw Gyaw as a part of raising awareness of basic labour rights is also making an impact on our financial situation. Implementation of rights is a part of the democratisation aspect of our work and we see it as a well-founded investment for our organization. We still feel we have a solid economic foundation, but we hope to partner up with another larger corporate investor to have the economic freedom to choose our projects and to combat costincreasing elements of our job.

Dormitories in Kler Deh under construction.

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PROSPECTS 2015 2015 starts where we left off 2014: The High School in Kler Deh. The 4 dormitories will be finished in February, and the adobe bricks for the second school building are being made. The whole project, with dormitories, bathrooms, kitchen, canteen and 2 school buildings will be finished before rainy season starts in the middle of June. We will also use some time for small fixes of previous projects. Noh Bo Academy, a Gyaw Gyaw project that was completed in 2011, needs some minor adjustments, a second coating for the adobe walls and new paint on the windows. The primary school in Maw Kwee also needs a second coating and after evaluating the school, we see that an adjustment of the roof will improve the vertical airflow and decrease the inside temperature. These small projects will hopefully be finished before the summer. Rainy season makes it difficult to work outside, especially when we work with adobe. Earth bricks need to dry in the sun, and this is not possible during the rainy months. June/July/August will most likely be spent making desks for the school in Kler Deh and to improve the outside area of the school campus with plants and pathways. We also consider to improve outdoor benches at Academy school. As an alternative to concrete when water is present, we have successfully tested burned bricks as wall material. Until now they are bought at a local factory in Mae Sot. It is however a material we can make ourselves on site. The Academy School in Noh Bo is in need of a kitchen and we hope to combine this with burning our own bricks and learning more about the process behind it. Education for children is important and we are very happy to have built both primary schools and high schools in the past, but it is also important that older students get the opportunity to learn leadership and organizational skills. A society in transition, from a war-torn oligarchy to a democracy, needs skilled young people in leading positions of the humanitarian and civilian Karen organizations. New Generation School is a KED-run (Karen Education Department) leadership school in the dense jungle on the Burmese side of the border. It is the only “college� in the area inside Karen State. Providing a much needed library and sharing the knowledge of sustainable architecture fits within the interests of Gyaw Gyaw and will hopefully make an impact for future buildings in the area to be built in a more sustainable way. Another opportunity is TTC - Teacher Training College. The college is financed by a University in New Zealand, but run in companionship with a local school organization. They are doing a great job educating good primary school teachers. They came to Noh Bo from Mae La refugee camp two years ago, but are looking for a more permanent place in Hpa-An, the capital of Karen State. We have briefly discussed if this is a project that fits Gyaw Gyaw. Hpa-An is a day trip from our base in Noh Bo, and such a project could be challenging in a logistical perspective. But it is important to raise awareness about what a good school building is and to provide future teachers with a sustainable and appropriate educational building with proper learning conditions. This might be a good way to show how we work, and maybe we can inspire others and raise awareness about sustainable architecture and local community development. These are just some of our potential future projects for 2015. There are advantages and challenges with all projects and we have yet to decide what the next big project will be. On behalf of Gyaw Gyaw, Ole Gunnar Michelsen and Line Ramstad Page 21

Gyaw Gyaw - Annual report 2014  

Gyaw Gyaw`s annual report 2014

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