Bijaya Kumari Rai Shrestha

AMKAS (Aaprabasi Mahila Kamdar Samuha) (Returnee Women Migrant Workers Group), Executive Chairperson 

Active in Country: Nepal

DTP Alumna - 2013 MW Nepal Modules 1-5


“I think every human rights defenders and activists should at least attend a DTP training which will allow them to do advocacy on a human rights perspective. Gaining knowledge from reading and from practice makes a big difference.”

Bijaya was a migrant worker in Japan.  Based on her experiences she returned to Nepal and has led efforts to promote and protect the rights of Nepal’s migrant workers – before they leave, while they are working away from Nepal and on their return.  Bijaya is now the Chairperson and Founder of AMKAS Nepal, an NGO she established in 2016 to work for Nepalese migrant workers returning to Nepal.  Bijaya has extensive experience working with Nepalese returnee migrant workers and was the Co-Founder and Executive Director for POURAKHI Nepal and Chairperson for Sirjansil Pourakhi Savings and Credit Co-operation. Bijaya’s work focuses on migration and trafficking, specifically returnee women migrant workers and their families. She works with others in civil society and with policy makers to press for change within government and society in general.   


Labour migration from Nepal is associated with many abuses of workers rights, and with negative impacts on society, – but there have also been many positive outcomes for Nepal and for many individuals. Bijaya’s work has included success in showcasing the positive outcomes associated with migration. Her organisation has used media as a catalyst in highlighting the success of Nepalese migrant workers specifically women. Bijaya’s work has also set up several income generating programs for returnee migrant women.


Bijaya believes the training she received from DTP has helped her in her work 

“The advocacy using the national and international standards on human rights have been very useful in our advocacy through our organization. It has been easier for me to identify relevant institutions and the skills and technics to address in a very effective way to do advocacy which we had practised during the training.”

 Bijaya has also used the networks she has made through DTP to further strengthen her approach in her leadership role and learn about the struggles other advocates face.




Profile written June 2018.