B.E.A.M. GED PROGRAM
Bridging Educational Access For Migrants Education Foundation (B.E.A.M.) is located in Chiang Mai and was founded in January 2010. Before B.E.A.M. was established, migrant worker programs had consisted of informal schools geared towards short-term basic level courses. Today, B.E.A.M. provides sustainable, long-term education for young ethnic Karen, Shan, Kachin, Lisu, Lahu, and other Burmese refugees and migrants. They offer a pathway to higher education, vocational training, language courses, legal assistance, an internship program, and scholarships for university students in need. Tuition and textbooks are free of charge.
B.E.A.M. believes that migrant youth have the potential to be a part of the larger community development of Thailand, Myanmar, and ASEAN nations, but they are marginalized due to the difficulties in attaining access to higher education. The organization envisions local, people-oriented, peaceful, and developed communities. This can be sustained by empowering local communities through comprehensive education.
Since refugees in Thailand cannot receive an accredited high school diploma, passing the American General Educational Development (GED) test gives them access to higher education. The GED program is internationally recognized and allows students without formal education backgrounds to receive an official high school diploma. Courses include Language Arts Reading and Writing, Math, Science, and Social Studies.