Land Mine Awareness Education in Cambodia (Initially published on the GENIE website)

Land Mine Awareness Education materials developed by Tim Grant
* Click on images for more detail

portrait Do Not Touch Mines design No.1
This is the front of the T-shirt designed by Tim for the Mine Awareness Training Team (MATT). The design was inspired by the many Hindu images that adorn the Angkor Wat temple complex. While most of the people in Cambodia are Buddhist, the Hindu images are respected. This shirt attempted to improve peoples unsafe practices in the name of fate and kharma. This shirt was printed in the hundreds of thousands and distributed throughout the affected villages.
portrait Do Not Touch Mines poster
This poster was designed to be very graphic and hard hitting. I gave the MATT artist several human anatomy books to make sure he got it as technically correct as possible. These posters were framed and nailed up in all the villages schools, temples and/or community buildings.
portrait CMAC poster
Tim designed this poster for the Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CMAC) mine awareness programme. The images were drawn by an American artist and scanned into Corel Draw 5, where Tim added the color and words. The messages given are
1. Do not touch mines.
2. Stay on the safe path.
3. Ask the local people for the safe path.
4. Do not take the mines signs from the minefield.
5. Mark a mine location with crossed sticks.
6. Report all mine locations to authorities.
portrait Fate, Karma& Magic Poster
This is a MATT poster attempting to encourage safe practises around the traditional beliefs.
1. Fate -People here believe that their life is predestined and if they are to be an amputee, then so be it. MATT encouraged them to realise it is their responsibility to take care of their body.
2. Amulets - People are encouraged not to rely on amulets and tattoos to protect them from mines.
3.Karma - People are encouraged not to believe they will/have become a mine victim because of karma. But its their present actions, which they have control over, not past actions that destine their lives.
hspace=2 Newspaper insert
This is another Do Not Touch design Tim produced, using Hindu images. It was published in the Phnom Penh Post newspaper during a media campaign targetting the workers of the Non-government and UN agencies working in Cambodia.
portrait How to Avoid Mines Game
This game was designed by Mr. Grant when he was working with the Land Mine Awareness Programme (LMAP), on the Thai/Cambodian border, in 1991. It was based on snakes & ladders, printed in the hundreds of thousands and distributed throughout all the refugee camps along the border. The Khmer staff took the games around to the huts and explained how to play the game and the meaning of the messages. This game is still being used by the MATT teams in Cambodia, rewarding the village children with mine awareness t-shirts as prizes.
portrait Game No.2
This is a game called "Help Grandfather" made for MATT programme. It requires the children to find the warning clues and warning signs in this cluttered picture. Warning signs include :- skull & cross bone sign, crossed sticks, plastic bag hanging from the tree and a snapped branch. Warning clues included fuses, exposed mine, mine wrappings and parts of mines.
portrait Silk Screen No.1
This is a silk screen poster that was hung up around the media displays. The image of a well-to-do Khmer woman was chosen to show that nobody is immune. Cotton material was chosen above paper or other materials as it was easy to roll up for transporting and because it needed to be cleaned regularly. Paper has a limited life in this hot dusty and temporary environment.
portrait Minefield procedures silk screen
This LMAP screen teaches people the correct procedures to follow when they see a mine or find themselves in a minefield.
1. Stop walking and tell everyone around that you have seen a mine.
2. Retrace your footsteps all the way back to a known safe area/path (practical exercises in retracing are always given in classes).
3. Mark the location with crossed sticks or whatever the local marking system is. They are reminded not to go off the safe area to collect marking materials.
4. Report the location of the mine to the local authorities.
portrait Travelling procedures silk screen
Another LMAP silk screen which goes through the procedures for travelling in unknown areas.
1. Always ask the local people for the safe paths.
2. Stay on the safe path.
3. Make sure you take special care with your children.
4. Mines can be found almost anywhere.
portrait Travelling procedures DETAIL
A detail of the above silk screen.
portrait Above ground mine silk screen
One of the set of 7 silk screens produced by LMAP, and later adapted for MATT in Cambodia. These are illustrations of the 6 most commonly found above ground mines in Cambodia. Some of these mines can be laid below ground as well, but they are placed in the above ground mine category so that people will be aware of what they may see.
portrait Underground mine silk screen
This is a screen made for the LMAP programme, and still used by MATT in Cambodia. These are illustrations of the 6 most commonly found mines in Cambodia. Teachers explain that mines can be found in many different sizes, shapes, colors, and can be made of many different materials, such as wood, metal and plastic.
portrait Materials testing
This photograph was taken out the front of the MATT office in Battambang Cambodia. It was at the very start of the program and the paintings were being displayed publicly to gauge the peoples reaction to them. Later the paintings were tested further and then used to decorate the teaching location. The man pictured was the office guard, Thy, who later became a vital asset to the program as our framer and woodworker.
portrait Mine Awareness bag
A group of primary school students display their LMAP mine awareness bags in a Khmer Rouge camp school. These bags were useful as schools bags but were also a good size for carrying the weekly rice ration back to their huts.
portrait The mobile information display
The LMAP mobile mine awareness information displays were usually set up at the rice ration distribution locations. They were also used during the 'raffle' for broadcasting the prize question and answer sessions. The displays included displays of mine awareness posters, mine model cases, other attractive traditional images, music/radio plays, etc.
portrait Mine Photo No.1
This is one of a set of 4 photographs that Tim took and had printed in large quantities. These were used by the LMAP Teachers and passed around in class for people to get a close look. The set included photographs of
1. A mine victim (pictured here)
2. An underground mine.
3. An above ground mine.
4. An unexploded ordnance (UXO).
portrait Raffle Clowns
This picture is one of the many media events staged in the refugee camps on the Thai/Cambodian border. 'Ting Mong' the traditional clowns, were used to attract attention so you could give out our numbered brochures. We can see the turmoil in the background as staff are besieged by children trying to get a brochure.
portrait Raffle crowd
This is part of the crowd that turned up for the lucky number draws and prize give outs. They are students from a secondary school in Site 2 refugee camp.
portrait LMAP Mine Awareness Class
This is a Site B refugee camp woman being instructed on how to prod in a minefield. The people are taught that they can only use this technique when rescuing someone from a minefield or getting themselves out of a minefield. Many injuries and deaths are caused by people running in to rescue a friend or relative who has been injured. They must be very careful, because where is there one mine there are generally more. Note, notice that we used tin cans to represent mines, so that none of the teachers would be seen touching mines (or even wooden mine models). Since this picture was taken the people are now taught to prod with a long blade knife (and not the hoe pictured here), because its easier to control.
portrait MATT Mine Awareness Class
This is one of the MATT Village Representatives conducting a training session in a frontline Cambodian village.
portrait MATT Teacher
This MATT Teacher is using the silk screens to give a lesson on 'Minefield Procedures'. He is pictured using an exposed mine model to demonstrate to the people how an underground mine is set off.
portrait Prodding lesson
This image is of one of the mine awareness teacher teaching a group of adult villagers (it is suppose to be strictly only adults, but some children always sneak in) how to prod to get themselves out of a minefield or to enter a minefield if they need to rescue someone. The teachers stresses that they must prod a full path, so they can walk safely when they are carrying a victim out of a minefield. The prodder has to be held at a 30 degree angle and 3-5cm deep probes are made at 2 finger joints apart, along lines which are also at 2 finger joints apart (this is so they don't miss the smallest mine found in Cambodia, which is approx. 5.6 cm in diameter).
portrait Wooden Mines Display
This is a picture of one of the display cases displaying the wooden models of underground mines. As well as showing the mine identification, you will notice that the case is enclosed with plastic, this is to promote the message of DO NOT TOUCH MINES. The photograph was taken in one of the refugee camps during a media event.
portrait Bucket of Bomb
This photograph was taken at the Thai Border Police station, of mines that have been found within Thai territory. Because LMAP was located inside of Thailand they didn't have access to 'real' mines. These mines were measured and used for the production of our wooden mine models.
portrait The Welcome Rock
This rock that features the image used for the 'Ask the Local People for the Safe Path' message. The rock was painted by the LMAP/MATT Khmer artist and stood in the doorway of the LMAP media office in Site 2 Refugee camp, 1991.
portrait Mine Display No.1
This is a warning clues board, which features the photograph of the hospital drain (Land Mine Warning Clues 2) below. The warning clues include parts of exploded mines, the internal workings of some mines, discarded caps (these caps fit over the slot before a detonator is inserted), detonator wrappings, pins/clips (these are extracted from mine when making it active) shrapnel, fuses and a stake from an above ground mine. These boards are used by MATT in their presentation.
portrait Mine Display No.2
An exposed mine model, used as teaching equipment and as warning clues display. Consists of the top part of a mine stuck down with a mixture of sand and glue.
portrait Mine Display No.3
This is the only 'real' mine that Tim ever displayed, because if the people, especially children, see the teachers handling mines in a casual manner, they may get the wrong message. The most important message in a mine awareness campaign is DO NOT TOUCH MINES OR UXOS. Because the 72 Beta mine is particularly dangerous he felt close identification was necessary (the teachers were instructed to not allow people to touch the plastic covered case). This mine is fitted with an anti-handling device which causes it to explode with a slight 10-15 degree tilt. To make matters worse the 72 Alpha mine, which does not have the anti-handling device, looks almost identical.
portrait Mine in Situ
This photograph was taken in Battambang province, Cambodia in a drain on the edge of a deserted hospital. There are 3 types of warning clues in this picture that could show people they are in a mined area. This photo is displayed as part of the Mine Awareness Training Team (MATT) informal media campaign.
portrait Mine in Situ (Labelled)
The same photo as above with labels showing the location of all the warning clues. Warning clues consist of pieces of exploded mines, a burnt live mine and a partly exposed mine (this would have been due to rain and water washing the top soil off).
portrait Mine Victim No.1
This is a picture of the 16 years old monk, who just had his leg blown off. He was on his way back from a wedding ceremony , walking on a path that they used everyday, when he stood on a mine. The hospital is in Kompong Speu, a town about 2 hours drive from the capital Phnom Penh. Tim Grant took this picture during a minefield tour with delegates from the Cambodian Conference in June 1995. The page he is holding is a leaflet produced by the American Red Cross and features a photo of the victim.
portrait Mine Victim No.2
A reminder of the purpose of mine awareness.
portrait Leaflet 1 Front
This leaflet was produced in response to an army offensive which resulted in thousands of people fleeing their homes. It was feared that many of the internally displaced people could stand on mines, because their once safe villages were now quite likely mined. The messages that were covered were Do not touch, stay on the safe path, do not take down mine signs/tapes and report the location of mines/UXOs the deminers. (English Version)
portrait Leaflet 1 Inside
This leaflet was produced in response to an army offensive which resulted in thousands of people fleeing their homes. It was feared that many of the internally displaced people could stand on mines, because their once safe villages were now quite likely mined. The messages that were covered were Do not touch, stay on the safe path, do not take down mine signs/tapes and report the location of mines/UXOs the deminers. (English Version)
portrait Leaflet1
These materials were viewed as a way of reaching those people we missed with the formal lectures. The leaflets were made as full A4 sheets printed on one side with mine identification illustrations and were handed out along with the brochures at the end of a lesson or whenever the occasion arose. All the most common mines & ordnance were represented and divided into 3 groups - above ground mines, below ground mines and Unexploded Ordnance.