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Human Trafficking Awareness Day: 5 NGOs fighting trafficking

TRAFFICKING takes on many forms. Trafficking for forced labor, organ harvesting, domestic servitude or sexual exploitation all include coercing or forcing its victims into a situation of helplessness from which there is little to no rescue or escape. But NGOs across India are working hard to fight the various forms of human trafficking that enslave around 50 million people around the world

In 2007 in the United States, Human Trafficking Awareness Day was declared a day to be observed and action to be taken. On this day, people and organizations would raise awareness on trafficking, its various forms and how to spot and combat its practice. In a digital world, human traffickers are increasingly using technology and social media to find and lure people, especially children, into being trafficked.

Here are 5 NGOs in India that are combating human trafficking and rehabilitating victims of this horrific crime:

Guria

Guria is an NGO in Uttar Pradesh that has been conducting daring rescue raids in the red light districts of Varanasi and rescuing trafficked girls and women. Since 1994, Guria has rescued over 5,500 women and brought them to a place of safety where they can be sheltered and rehabilitated with counseling, education, vocational skills training and being reunited with their families, in some cases. 

The NGO’s founder is Manju who shares that the victims are tortured with electric wires, burnt with cigarettes to bring them to a place of submission. “I rescued a two-year-old girl who had multiple cuts on her vagina” and was tortured to the point where her private parts had become mangled. But Guria’s mission is to take on the traffickers, which Manju is successfully doing. Manju has booked over 1,700 criminal cases against traffickers, secured over 600 bail rejections and has shut down hundreds of brothels. To support Guria, you can donate here.

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Society for Participatory Integrated Development (SPID)

SPID is an NGO in Delhi that rescues children trapped in red light districts who are trafficked for sex. As unimaginable as this sounds, the founder of SPID goes on to shed light on the horrific conditions that children are forced to endure. Objects are inserted into the private parts of little children until they reach their breaking point and they submit to the will of traffickers and men who commit rape. 

Since 2004, Lalitha has rescued over 3,000 trafficked children. Once the children are safe in her care, she  gives them a home to live in, caters to their mental health, nurtures them back to good health, enrolls them in school and reunites them with their families. Lalitha is a social worker and for decades her work took her to the infamous red light district in GB Road where children as young as 10 years old were suffering in brothels – a place no child should be. To support Society for Participatory Integrated Development, you can donate here.

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Sahyog Care For You

Sahyog Care For You is an NGO in Delhi that focuses on rescuing children forced into child labor in dangerous factories. Since 2002, the NGO has saved more than 200,000 children from child labor and bonded labor and given them a chance to have a normal childhood filled with opportunities. At these factories, the children are forced to work in inhumane conditions that overwork them. 

The founder of Sahyog Care For You is Shekhar Mahajan who explains in detail the conditions that young children are forced to work in. “The children are forced to start working before sunrise in dangerous factories that even grown men would find challenging. These areas are filled with toxic fumes and smoke and the children are forced to endure excruciating labor until late at night on an empty stomach.” Once the children are rescued, the NGO provides urgent medical care, healthy meals and a safe place to live. To support Sahyog Care For You, you can donate here.

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Snehalaya

Snehalaya is an NGO in Ahmednagar in Maharashtra that focuses on rehabilitating children who have contracted HIV/AIDS as a result of the rape and sexual torture they were forced to endure in the red light districts. Since 1992, Snehalaya has rescued more than 1,100 girls from brothels and gives them a safe environment, medical attention, education and emotional support to recover from their trauma. 

Girish Kulkarni is the founder of Snehalaya who remembers being shocked to the core at witnessing the rape of a 12-year-old child by a group of men that he vowed to rescue as many children as he could from sex trafficking. Children with HIV/AIDS require constant medical attention and medical care to cope with the disease and work toward building their futures with a good education. But the constant rising costs of medical care means the children of Snehalaya are in need of support. To support Snehalaya, you can donate here

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Kshamata

Kshamata is an NGO in Thane in Maharashtra that offers livelihood and skills training opportunities for women who were rescued from sex trafficking. Founded in 2016, Kshamata offers multiple programs to help women by providing relevant skills training so they can build their futures in safe and secure careers that do not place them in any danger.

Bharathy Tahiliani and the NGO she founded have rescued over 1,000 women who were trafficked for sexual exploitation. Kshamata believes in the rehabilitation and reintegration of the women back into society where they can live without fear and with independence and dignity. Kshamata focuses on rehabilitation because as Bharathy explains, “the women lack literacy and skills training so we start by providing them with counseling – and then we help them rebuild their lives.” To support Kshamata, you can donate here.

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This Human Trafficking Awareness Day, your support can help countless girls and women recover from the trauma of trafficking and live their lives in safety and with their heads held high.


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