A21 | Prevention is Better Than a Cure

May 2 2014

The NEED.
At least 20.9 million adults and children are bought and sold worldwide into commercial sexual servitude, forced labour and bonded labour. An estimated 53% of detected trafficking victims are subjected to sexual exploitation. There are an estimated 1.39 million victims of commercial sexual servitude worldwide.

In Eastern Europe and Central Asia, nearly all (99%) of the victims detected are either domestically trafficked or trafficked from neighbouring countries. The vast majority (90%) of convicted traffickers are local citizens. 77% of victims are women and 90% of victims are adults. The main forms of exploitation are sexual exploitation (71%) and forced labour (26%).

Poverty, lack of employment opportunities and discrimination against women has can result in young women from Eastern Europe searching for jobs in the EU, looking for a better life. Most girls grow up with no awareness of human trafficking or the high demand of women in the international sex trafficking industry. Fake job offers or ‘boyfriends’ claiming to be offering a new life can trick girls into a trafficking situation. Trafficking in persons is an intricate crime and responses to trafficking need to be tailored and specific to the national and regional context in order to be effective.

The PROJECT.
The A21 Campaign is committed to continuing prevention and awareness efforts in Eastern Europe and one focus area in 2016 is Bulgaria. Approximately 40% of survivors that A21 sees rescued in Greece have been trafficked from Bulgaria, and many of them were coerced into the country through false job offers. A21’s research concluded that 91% of Bulgarian students are at risk of labour exploitation if they decide today to look for a summer job outside of Bulgaria.

To prevent more young Bulgarians from becoming victims of labour exploitation, A21 launched Summerjobs – an awareness-raising initiative targeted at 19-30 year-olds, who are planning to look for a summer job abroad. This campaign runs nationwide across Bulgaria and includes live events on university campuses, distribution of prevention material, as well as media and social media campaigns. To date, A21 have reached over 30,000 students with a message of prevention and awareness, but there is still much work left to do as such a high percentage of Bulgaria’s young people are at risk of falling into the schemes of traffickers.

Through supporting this project you can help spread the prevention message, targeting those who are seeking employment to ensure they don’t fall victim to trafficking schemes.

A Great REPORT.
Despite the political turmoil and tragedies that Ukraine suffered in 2014, the A21 team on the ground managed to continue to run programs. The A21 team has expanded their work in this challenging season by training young and committed people in strategic locations throughout the country, creating new interesting methods of raising awareness, and partnering with more schools, universities and authorities. Approximately 8,500 students, educators, orphans and university students were reached in 2014 with the message of Freedom, through events and personal training.

Local Church AWARENESS.
If you are part of a local church please be mindful of your local church vision and be sure to graciously submit and share your heart with those in leadership in your life. We believe we should see this as an ‘above and beyond’ endeavour that has the capacity to reach out and build bridges into our unchurched communities and ultimately be a blessing.

Our RESPONSE.
PRAY
That girls will not be tricked or lured into trafficking. Pray for strategic, coordinated and effective responses in prevention and victim support. Pray for increased favour with the authorities.

FUNDRAISE.
Check out our handy little tips on various ways to raise funds. Please see the financial guidelines document online for more practical information. Please note that if a project is completed we reserve the right to transfer any excess funds to another project.

THE DETAILS
$500 AUD reaches 357 of those currently seeking employment in Bulgaria, to help ensure they do not fall victims to the schemes of traffickers.

£500 reaches 724 of those currently seeking employment in Bulgaria, to help ensure they do not fall victims to the schemes of traffickers.

€500 reaches 333 of those currently seeking employment in Bulgaria, to help ensure they do not fall victims to the schemes of traffickers.

R500 reaches 56 of those currently seeking employment in South Africa, to help ensure they do not fall victims to the schemes of traffickers.

$500 USD reaches 500 of those currently seeking employment in Bulgaria, to help ensure they do not fall victims to the schemes of traffickers.

TELL US YOUR STORY
Send us an email at [email protected] as we would love to hear about how you did it!