From December 13 to 14th, the Richardson Center conducted a messaging and campaign training in Pyapone City in the Ayerwaddy Division. Upon the invitation of the Upper House MP from the area, trainer Mindy Walker traveled to the area three hours outside of Yangon. This was the first training in a series of trainings led by the Richardson Center in the region. The two-day workshop was held at the NLD headquarters in Pyapone and 45 active members attended. The project trained regional and township level executive committee members, office staff, volunteers, communication personnel and other local party leaders.
The training focused on connecting political parties with voters and the media. The workshop covered topics including researching the district and identifying the most relevant issues, targeting and identifying voters, crafting a campaign message and campaign techniques. Many of these concepts and techniques were new to the participants despite having worked in politics for many years. The training helped them to understand the information they need to gather before the 2015 elections and how to use it effectively in campaigns.
The Ayerwaddy Division was devastated after Cyclone Nargis hit the area in 2008. Tens of thousands of people died and most homes were destroyed. Over the coming months, we will work with the other major parties in the region to assist them in connecting to constituents in their new democracy.