Project #137 | Combating Human Trafficking Through Rescue, Restoration, and Justice in India
Our partnership with Freedom Firm
There are approximately 3 million commercial sex workers in India, of which an estimated 40% are children. Their families often allow them to accept the promise of a good job in the city or to venture to metropolitan areas alone in order to make money for the family. Due to the economic strains on families, parents themselves will sometimes sell their daughters into prostitution out of financial desperation.
Our partner Freedom Firm seeks to eliminate child prostitution in India by providing rescue, restoration, and justice for victims of sex trafficking. Their goal is to operate in areas where little anti-trafficking work is being done. They focus on smaller cities with large red-light districts that lack the resources and training to counter trafficking. For our second project with Freedom Firm, we tackled rescue, restoration and justice operations in Meerut, Uttar Pradesh. In the first phase of the project, undercover operatives located minor girls in brothels and documented the crime. The Freedom Firm team, along with the police, raided the brothels, rescued the girls, and arrested the brothel keepers and traffickers. The survivors were then placed in government remand homes such as Meerut Government Shelter Home, where the aftercare team was given permission to provide life skills training, counseling, and therapy. In the final phase, Freedom Firm actively pursued the conviction of those responsible for trafficking minors. The legal team made sure criminal complaints were filed against the girls’ oppressors. Rescued girls are empowered to testify against their abusers and help bring them to justice. Every trial and every conviction creates a deterrent and raises the cost of sex trafficking in India.
Our collective impact
Girls Receiving Aftercare Support
Total People Impacted
Sunita is 18-20 years old. She was rescued on February 15, 2019. What we have learned so far is that she has received no formal education in her life. She comes from a community in Rajasthan that exists substantially off of the earnings of sending their daughters into prostitution. Sunita’s home is situated in a rural region of the community where there are no basic amenities, no schools and no proper road to enter her village. The next step in the reintegration process is for Sunita to move from the Shelter home back to her village. As part of the rescue aftercare work provided by Freedom Firm, social workers went to visit Sunita’s home to ensure safe reintegration. There they found her mother, father, and three brothers. Sunita also has three sisters ages 13-15, but they were not home and unaccounted for during the visit. These are the signs that the social workers look out for that may indicate other young women are being trafficked or at risk of being trafficked. Our partnership with Freedom Firm allows more women like Sunita to exit the sex industry and reintegrate back into their homes.
Thank you for making this possible!
Our movement is grassroots, to us that not only means the work on the ground is led by local leaders with the support of the community, but it also means that we raise the funds for our projects through everyday donors just like you. In addition to all the donors that gave $25, $100, or $250 and the campaigners that ran a race or donated their birthday to raise funds, we also want to thank our generous business, school, and faith sponsors who believed in our work and joined the movement.
If you want to support future projects like this you can make a donation to our human trafficking fund.