Project #151 | Aftercare Support for Survivors of Human Trafficking in Thailand
Our partnership with LIFT International
Thailand is a source, destination and transit country for sex trafficking. Arguably it is the hub of commercial sex in Southeast Asia, and as a result there are a plethora of establishments from open fronted bars to backstreet brothels. If traffickers and child sex offenders believe they face a high risk of being prosecuted, convicted, and imprisoned, this will create a powerful deterrent that will drive them out of business. This will also prevent further victims from being trafficked, a method referred to as prevention through prosecution. Despite more than two decades of substantial investment in counter-trafficking initiatives, the global community is losing the war against traffickers. Historically, strategies to reduce trafficking have focused on the behavior of victims: attempting to prevent vulnerable people from becoming victims through advocacy and awareness programs, or rescuing and protecting victims through aftercare and rehabilitation. But trafficking is a crime committed by offenders, not victims. This calls for an approach that includes prevention, persecution, and aftercare for survivors.
One Day’s Wages partnered with LIFT International to provide critical support to survivors through LIFT’s Protect Team. LIFT International serves men, women and children from many countries who find themselves exploited and in need of assistance. Along with their prevention through prosecution efforts, LIFT works with government agencies and other non-governmental organizations to get survivors of trafficking the care and support they need. This partnership empowered LIFT’s social workers in their aftercare work, supported Love Packs for survivors at government shelters or at home, endowed a Survivor Fund that provides cash assistance or scholarships to survivors of exploitation as they are repatriated and rehabilitated in their home communities, and trained other caregivers working with vulnerable and exploited people.
Our collective impact
Total People Impacted
Total People Rescued
Meet Panit (name changed for privacy)
Panit’s mom died when he was five years old. As a sex worker, she had contracted HIV, leaving Panit alone with his Dad after she passed away. The year Panit started seventh grade, his dad got progressively more ill with HIV, so Panit dropped out of school to take care of him. His father died, which left Panit alone. Panit was able to seek help through LIFT and was provided with therapy where the counselor discovered that he was sexually abused as a child. Panit fell victim to becoming a child prostitute and was lured in by his abuser by giving him money in exchange for sexual pleasure. LIFT recognizes that there is no such thing as a child prostitute and support Panit through taking legal action. Panit’s offender was charged and imprisoned. Panit stated that having his abuser convicted “helped me to get closure,” and also stated that “I don’t have to think about it all the time.” He is looking forward now, wanting to study, graduate, get a good job and buy his own house. For now, he has to focus on his studies and more singing competitions.
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.