PRIZE WINNERS 2007 - Second Winner
Second Category for projects by national non-governmental organization (NGOs).
||US$ 100,000 |
|The Winning Project
||Combat Trafficking of Women and children through Community Partnership. (Selected winner from 18 projects). |
||PARAJWALA NGO |
||Stree Jagruti Samiti Organization |
Trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation of women and children in India is a multidimensional problem especially with regard to its causes. While socio-economic factors play a major role in this process of victimization, cultural political and religious factors too are important elements of this problem. India is a source, destination and transit for trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation. Nearly 5-7% of the trafficking that happens in India is cross-border. Large number of girls from Nepal. Pakistan, and Bangladesh are trafficked to different red light areas of India. But the majority of the trafficking is inter-state.
In India over 200 thousand women and children are inducted into flesh trade or commercial sexual exploitation every year. Out of these 25% are children. A concerning fact is: the frightening reality that the age of the children is progressively coming down.
The growing demand of children in various forms of flesh trade such as brothel based prostitution, sex tourism and pornography is largely due to the myths and misconceptions generated such as sex with a child could increase male virility and decrease the transmission of HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections. On the contrary children in prostitution are more susceptible to infections than adults And these extreme traumatic experiences in their formative years, not only retard their healthy development but also leave permanent scars in their lives.
Andhra Pradesh has emerged as the second largest supplier of women and children for the purposes of trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation. It is a transit, destination and supply point for trafficking. Women and children from other stales like Karnataka, Orissa and Maharashtra are taken via Andhra Pradesh to be sold in cities like Delhi or Mumbai. More than fifteen districts in Andhra Pradesh are identified to be major source areas. These districts are characterized by the vulnerabilities of its population in terms of poverty, low literacy, drought, breaking of traditional livelihoods etc. But the issue of concern is the age of the victim. It has been observed that progressively younger children in the age group of 12-15 yrs. are being trafficked.
Many cities in Andhra Pradesh, particularly Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Vishakapalnarn are destinations for women and children both within and outside the state. In recent times a large number of girls from Orissa, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh have been found in Hyderabad as bar girls/dancers.
Addressing the issue of trafficking is a multi-pronged one. Al one end is the challenge of prevention. On the other, the situation of victims of trafficking is a matter of deep concern. These young women and children are subjected to physical, sexual and mental torture for years in brothel houses, which are unhygienic and unsafe. Coupled with this trauma is the danger of sexually transmitted infections and in many cases being infected by HIV. The social reality of stigma furthers the isolation of these Victims Mental health interventions in this phase is very crucial to the emotional and physical rehabilitation of the girls.
PRAJWALA is an anti-trafficking organization based in the old city of Hyderabad in South India. it believes in preventing women and children from entering prostitution, the worst form of sexual slavery. PRAJWALA, which started in the year 1996 with a small transition centre for second generation prevention with only 12 children in a vacated brothel, today works on all aspects of anti-trafficking viz., rescue, rehabilitation, restoration and social intervention of victims of trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation. These interventions are made possible by a large team of supervisors of trafficking who are full time partners in the organization.
In the process of implementation of various programmes to combat trafficking PRAJWALA has evolved need based intentions and methodologies, which are milestones for the organization and breakthrough in the Anti-trafficking sector.
PRAWALA works with the conviction that to break the walls of learnt helplessness that a victim of sexual exploitation develops, a multi-pronged approach is necessary. Any interventions on behalf of these victims have to be an interlinked chain of psychological healing, vocational empowerment, economically viable and socially acceptable. The programs to impen1ent these Strategies and Interventions are mainly focused on Prevention, Rescue, Rehabilitation, Reintegration and Advocacy.