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Blog

Filtering by Tag: holistic aftercare

India's Proposed Anti-Trafficking Law

Lindsey Malcolm

Reuters published an article last week with the headline Female Slavery Survivors Unite to Back India Anti-Trafficking Law, and it proves how important our position within the anti-trafficking movement truly is.

The law would not only decriminalize the victims of trafficking by preventing imprisonment for those rescued from brothels or other forced labor situations, but it would also give survivors better access to the resources they need to rebuild their lives. Unfortunately, there are millions of trafficking survivors within India’s borders, too many for the government to handle on its own.

A survivor of slavery who wished to remain anonymous poses for a picture in New Delhi, India March 7, 2018. Picture taken March 7, 2018. REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton

A survivor of slavery who wished to remain anonymous poses for a picture in New Delhi, India March 7, 2018. Picture taken March 7, 2018. REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton

We need shelter, support, education for our children ... not just money,” and
“We are poor so access to justice and rehabilitation is hard.
— Meena, a mother of four and survivor of exploitation

For more than 10 years, International Sanctuary has understood the key to complete restoration is more than money - the whole person must be embraced and restored.

By combining meaningful employment and job training with opportunities for education, healthcare, and community, women and girls in our Sanctuaries have a safe, loving environment where they can rebuild their lives. Hundreds of lives and multiple generations have been transformed through our model, which is why we are reaching for an aggressive goal of 10 Sanctuaries operating around the world by 2020.

International Sanctuary is meeting the survivors of human trafficking where they are, between rescue and the threat of being re-trafficked because there are no other options.

We can present these women with a solution that protects them and their children against future exploitation - but we need you to make these opportunities possible.

International Sanctuary began in Mumbai, India and is now empowering women in Orange County, California; Tijuana, Mexico; and Kampala, Uganda. We know these things to be true:

  • Our model is sustainable, effective, and replicable;
  • Anti-trafficking partners regularly ask us to bring our model to their girls;
  • We cannot grow without financial partners like you.

When you invest in life transformation, you are helping bring an end to human trafficking once and for all.

Surprised by Hope

Lindsey Malcolm

By Seema D.

Seema Photo Bank.jpg

I have been supporting International Sanctuary since January 2009. International Sanctuary empowers survivors of human trafficking through a unique model integrated employment, education, healthcare, and community.

Growing up, my parents could never provide me with answers to my troubling observations as we visited India. Not until I was 18 did I realize the atrocity of human trafficking, that girls were being sold for sex. Since having my two daughters, I have become even more passionate about fighting for women’s rights.

For years, I have heard about the courageous young women escaping human trafficking and imagined a time when I would meet them. Finally, this past summer, I was able to meet them face to face in Mumbai, India.

The Sanctuary, however, was not at all what I expected. Walking in, I anticipated a heaviness which you would expect in an environment fostering healing from trauma. Instead, I experienced joy, hope, and a spirit of bold confidence.

I had the opportunity to teach a Life Skills & Professionalism session in The Academy, their 3-year educational program. The session included a Q&A on cultural barriers and how to overcome them. I was able to share with them a bit about my beliefs and perspectives, and encourage them in their growth and development. Many of the girls expressed challenges that they were currently experiencing and discussed ways to work through them.

I also had the opportunity to sit down in the workshop and have one of the young women teach me how to make a piece of jewelry. We bonded as she demonstrated the skills needed to handcraft such beautiful creations. I gained incredible respect for the determination required to hone her craft.

It was an honor to be able to meet 25 of my new sisters and become their Didi; I look forward to returning.

Financial Empowerment

Lindsey Malcolm

Since the start of 2015, the Mumbai Sanctuary has seen explosive growth! More young women are working full time in the workshop than ever before. With courage and bravery, these young women are taking tremendous strides in their personal growth, especially their financial independence.

As anyone who has had the experience of their first "real" paycheck knows, it can take some time to learn how to manage your finances. It is no different with the participants in iSanctuary’s program. Each participant is paid per piece. The more jewelry they produce, the higher the paycheck.  The learning curve is steep for these young women as they have rarely faced any sort of financial decisions before, nor do they come from families who modeled positive financial decision making. For many of them, this is the first time in their lives they have the liberty to make decisions with an income they have independently earned.

Through iSanctuary financial empowerment seminars, young women are able to learn the answers to many basic questions: What is savings? Why save? What are assets? Why build assets? What kind of challenges do we face when trying to save money? Each participant takes the time to develop short term and long term savings goals and a plan for reaching that goal. Not only are these young women learning to develop their own personal finance plans, but they are learning from a senior participant who models this skill. The course instructor joined iSanctuary seven years ago, and has demonstrated a natural teaching ability by instructing jewelry making classes and mentoring new participants in the aftercare homes. Through the focused development of one participant at a time, we were able to see exponential growth on the original investment seven years ago.  

Exponential empowerment is taking place as one participant mentors and develops others! When one woman flourishes, others are empowered through her growth. The finance class is just one more example of iSanctuary’s holistic approach to aftercare.