South Asian Regional Project

Centre for Social Research (CSR) jointly initiated a network project entitled 'South Asia Network Building against Trafficking to Lobby for Implementation of SAARC Convention during 2005-2006 in Bangladesh, Nepal, India and Sri Lanka supported by SARI/Q, New Delhi.

Centre for Women and Children Studies (CWCS) was the Country Nodal Agency (CNA) in Bangladesh.

Activities of CWCS as the Country Nodal Agency:

  • Preparing a background paper on Status of Implementation of SAARC Convention on Prevention of Trafficking in Persons in Bangladesh.
  • Organizing a one day Stakeholders Consultation at the National Level to develop a 'National Action Plan' and 'Road Map' for effective implementation of SAARC Convention in the country.
  • Formulation of Committee Against Trafficking (CAT)
  • Organizing 3 Meetings with:
    • Legislators, policy makers
    • Law Enforcement (including police, Judges, lawyers)
    • Media, other NGOs and INGOs to appraise them of the issues and to ask them to formulate/amend policies/procedures/legislations for effective implementation of the SAARC Convention.
  • Prepare 'Country Report' on the success stories and challenges for effective implementation of SAARC Convention in the country.

Lessons Learnt

  • Improvement of information sharing among countries of South Asia and beyond.
  • Lobby for bilateral agreements on extradition, protection of victims and witness with the SAARC Secretariat in Nepal.
  • Training and technical assistance.
  • Effective networking to address various issues related to trafficking in women and children among partner organizations even after the end of project period.


Women Rights Projects

I. Promotion of Legal and Social Empowerment of Women through Alternative Dispute Resolution Salish

The project entitled "Promotion of Legal and Social Empowerment of Women through Alternative Dispute Resolution Salish" was undertaken by CWCS with the financial support of the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) from September – December 2006. Geographical coverage of the project was Tejgaon Thana (Police Station) area of Dhaka.

Objectives of the project:

  • Raise awareness of the relevant stakeholders and women to ensure women’s participation in the decision making process during Salish (Alternative Dispute Resolution – ADR).
  • Empowerment of women and reduce gender inequality.

Project Activities:

  • Preparation of a three-day training module on ADR/Salish to train the master trainers (TOT)
  • Imparting Training of Trainers (TOT) for partner NGO staff members
  • Observation of training sessions conducted by partner NGO
  • Monitoring and evaluation of the project.

Lessons Learnt

  • Similar training can be extended to other areas under the same police station, so far more people know about the issues.
  • Domestic violence could be reduced if men and women in the community are knowledgeable about the provisions of the existing laws.
  • Powerful and influential people should be sensitized about the situation that is prevailing in the community with regard to domestic violence, rape, sexual harassment, etc. and that they should be accountable to prevent such violence.
  • Men have to be motivated to work towards bringing overall attitudinal and behavioral change towards women.
  • Police have to be sensitized about women’s rights and to provide service to the poor and disadvantaged sections of the population, especially women.
  • At the same time, ward commissioners should play a vital role during salish, which should reflect a non-biased judgment without any favour to particular influential persons.

II. Advocacy to Combat Gender Violence in Shrimp Cultivation Areas of Satkhira district

The project entitled ‘Advocacy to Combat Gender Violence in Shrimp Cultivation Areas of Satkhira district’ has been undertaken with the financial support of the Australian High Commission in Bangladesh under its Direct Aid Program from March - November 2007. Geographically the project covered 3 thanas namely Debhata, Kaliganj and Satkhira Sadar of Satkhira district.

Objectives of the project:

  • Sensitize and enhance the level of understanding of the members of law enforcing agencies, local elected representatives, NGOs and community people about the vulnerable situation of violence against women and children.
  • Bridge the gap between law enforcing agencies, local elected representatives, NGOs, community people and vulnerable women and children so that they could collaborate with each other to combat violence against women and children.
  • Develop a hotline service in the shrimp cultivation areas of Sathkira so that women and children can get support and wide dissemination.

Project activities:

  • Organizing a Consultation Meeting at Sathkira with relevant stakeholders.
  • Organizing 10 Focus Group Discussions with the vulnerable women and children separately of the shrimp cultivation areas on the issue of violence and their access to justice.
  • Developing and printing of the BCC materials and Facilitator’s Handbook.
  • Organizing 5 Sensitization Sessions at the 5 police stations with the police, and 5 Sensitization Sessions with the local elected representatives on the issue of violence against women and children and the active role that they can play to combat such violence.
  • Monitoring the project activities and hotline service by partner organization.
  • Organizing Experience Sharing Seminar at Dhaka.

Lessons Learnt

Better understanding regarding various issues relating to the gender violence and capacity building: Focus group discussions and other activities undertaken within this project has provided a scope to get in-depth information and knowledge on various issues such as types of gender violence, trend and services available for the victims of gender violence as well as existing situations prevailing in the area which has ultimately lead to capacity building of our organization to work more effectively in the near future.

Improving relationship with representative of the local government, officials, members of the community particularly with women and children working in the shrimp cultivation fields of Satkhira district: Though CWCS has good working relation with the government agencies and departments and other stakeholders in the working areas, the project has improved it further and created opportunity to improve relationship with representatives of the local government, officials, members of the community particularly with women and children working in the shrimp cultivation areas of Satkhira district.

A milestone in designing further projects or programmes: It should also be noted that as issues related to gender violence in shrimp cultivation fields are complex in nature due to many underlying factors and the project tenure was only for nine months, it was almost impossible to bring about significant changes. However, the above project can be termed as a milestone in designing any project or programme in the near future to address gender violence in the shrimp cultivation areas of Satkhira district and beyond.


Projects to Combat Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation of Women, Adolescent girls and Children

I. Pilot Project on Advocacy to Combat Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking in Satkhira district

The project entitled Pilot Project on Advocacy to Combat Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking in Satkhira district was initiated in November 2007 - March 2009 with the financial assistance of the Anesvad Foundation.

Project goal and objectives:

To combat sexual exploitation and trafficking in women and children through capacity building of grassroots level organizations, law enforcing agencies, local leaders, teachers, journalists and members of the community and forming Community Watch Committees (CWCs) to support the victims of sexual exploitation and trafficking.

Project activities that have been undertaken:

  • Baseline Study on Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking in four unions namely Parulia, Shakhipur, Nalta and Varashimla of Satkhira district has been conducted.
  • One-day Experience Sharing Meeting with Key Stakeholders at Debhata Upazila was organized.
  • One-day Experience Sharing Meeting with Key Stakeholders at Kaligonj Upazila was organized.
  • 4,000 posters and 4,000 booklets to combat trafficking in women and children printed for wide dissemination.
  • Facilitator's handbook to conduct union level motivational workshops has been developed.
  • 10 two-day awareness raising and motivational workshops have been organized.
  • 26 courtyard meetings have been organized.
  • 16 bazaar meetings have been organized.
  • 20 follow-up meetings of Community Watch Committee (CWC) have been organized. 32 victims of trafficking in women and children rescued and handed over to their family members by Community Watch Committee members.

Lessons Learnt

  • Similar training can be extended to other areas under the same police station, so far more people know about the issues.
  • Domestic violence could be reduced if men and women in the community are knowledgeable about the provisions of the existing laws.
  • Powerful and influential people should be sensitized about the situation that is prevailing in the community with regard to domestic violence, rape, sexual harassment, etc. and that they should be accountable to prevent such violence.
  • Men have to be motivated to work towards bringing overall attitudinal and behavioral change towards women.
  • Police have to be sensitized about women’s rights and to provide service to the poor and disadvantaged sections of the population, especially women.
  • At the same time, ward commissioners should play a vital role during salish, which should reflect a non-biased judgment without any favour to particular influential persons.

II. South Asia Network Building against Trafficking to Lobby for Implementation of SAARC Convention

Centre for Social Research (CSR) jointly initiated a network project entitled 'South Asia Network Building against Trafficking to Lobby for Implementation of SAARC Convention during 2005-2006 in Bangladesh, Nepal, India and Sri Lanka supported by SARI/Q, New Delhi.
Centre for Women and Children Studies (CWCS) was the Country Nodal Agency (CNA) in Bangladesh.

Activities of CWCS as the Country Nodal Agency:

  • Preparing a background paper on Status of Implementation of SAARC Convention on Prevention of Trafficking in Persons in Bangladesh.
  • Organizing a one day Stakeholders Consultation at the National Level to develop a 'National Action Plan' and 'Road Map' for effective implementation of SAARC Convention in the country.
  • Formulation of Committee Against Trafficking (CAT)
  • Organizing 3 Meetings with:
    • Legislators, policy makers
    • Law Enforcement (including police, Judges, lawyers)
    • Media, other NGOs and INGOs to appraise them of the issues and to ask them to formulate/amend policies/procedures/legislations for effective implementation of the SAARC Convention.
  • Prepare 'Country Report' on the success stories and challenges for effective implementation of SAARC Convention in the country.

Lessons Learnt

  • Improvement of information sharing among countries of South Asia and beyond.
  • Lobby for bilateral agreements on extradition, protection of victims and witness with the SAARC Secretariat in Nepal.
  • Training and technical assistance.
  • Effective networking to address various issues related to trafficking in women and children among partner organizations even after the end of project period.

III. State of Trafficking in Women and Children and their Sexual Exploitation in Bangladesh

The action research project entitled ‘State of Trafficking in Women and Children and their Sexual Exploitation in Bangladesh’ was initiated in March 2007 for 18 months with the financial assistance of the Anesvad Foundation, Spain. The main goal is to undertake a research study to explore the existing state of trafficking in women and children and their experience of sexual exploitation and violence in 38 districts of the 6 divisions in Bangladesh as well as in Kolkata, India using both qualitative and quantitative approach.

Specific objectives were to explore:

  • Nature, magnitude and trends of trafficking in women and children and their sexual exploitation.
  • Determining factors, modes of procurement and consequences of trafficking.
  • Social and health impact of trafficking, especially HIV/AIDS and social stigmatization.
  • Various stakeholders in the trafficking chain.
  • Main trafficking routes, mainly land routes.
  • Legal framework and its implications.
  • Changes brought about due to interventions of Government and NGOs.
  • Needs of women and children in post trafficking situation such as social integration, rehabilitation, repatriation, etc.
  • An advocacy tool and policy recommendations based on the needs of women and children who have been trafficked and sexually exploited.

Activities undertaken:

  • 607 trafficked victim families were interviewed from 38 districts.
  • 173 FGDs were conducted with family members, guardians, law enforcing agencies, government officials, NGO workers, manpower agencies, agents, pimps, traffickers.
  • 400 sex workers were interviewed from 11 brothels throughout Bangladesh.
  • 20 floating sex workers were interviewed from Dhaka city.
  • 43 case studies of trafficked victims were collected from various shelter homes in Bangladesh.
  • 17 case studies of trafficked victims were collected from shelter home in Kolkata.
  • Paper clippings of missing, kidnapped and trafficked children and trafficked women from January 2000 to December 2007 have been compiled to assess the media coverage on the issues.

Main outcome:

The main outcome of the extensive research was identifying strategies to combat trafficking in women and children which extended from awareness raising of vulnerable communities, legal remedies and last of all empowerment through capacity building of victims/survivors.

IV. Health service oriented referral system for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation in Sathkira district

The project entitled Health service oriented referral system for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation in Sathkira district, Bangladesh was initiated in May 2010 – December 2011 with the financial assistance of the ANESVAD Foundation. Geographically the project covered 2 upazilas namely Debhata and Kaliganj of Satkhira district.

Project goal and objectives:

The project goal is to build a health service oriented referral system for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation in Sathkira district, Bangladesh. The main objectives are to reduce the physical, sexual and mental health risks and consequences of trafficking and sexual exploitation in women and adolescent girls in Sathkira district, Bangladesh.

Project outputs are to:

  • Enable access to quality information and services directed to victims of trafficking and those in vulnerable situation.
  • Promote concerted efforts and improved coordination among Community Watch Committees (CWC), health service providers, law enforcing agencies and NGOs.
  • Build the capacity of CWC and health service providers to enable the provision of quality services directed to victims of trafficking.

Project activities that have been undertaken:

  • Establishment of Information Health Booth to assist victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation based in Parulia union to be available to provide primary health services and medicines who will refer cases to the hospital and other health centres according to the health needs of the victims
  • Establishment of the specialized hotline for sexually exploited and trafficked victims.
  • Conducted Baseline Study on health services and delivery system of 10 unions of Debhata and Kaliganj upazilas by identifying the number of government and private hospitals, clinics and NGOs support health facilities, number of doctors, nurses, paramedics, midwives who are providing health services, type of medical treatments available and accommodation, whether they have treated any women and adolescents girls victims of sexual exploitation and trafficking.
  • Two Experience Sharing Meetings with Key Stakeholders to share the findings of the baseline study at Debhata and Kaligonj upazilas were organized.
  • 5,000 brochures, 10.000 posters and 10,000 Hotline Health Cards to promote health services for the victims of sexual exploitation and trafficking printed and widely disseminated among key stakeholders and community people.
  • Developed Training Manual on Health Risks, Consequence and Health Care of Victims of Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking in Women and Adolescent Girls including relevant content to Bangladesh context from Caring for Trafficked Person: Guidance for Health Providers.
  • Imparted training to the doctor and nurse based at the Information Booth and 8 project staff on special primary health care for the victims and potential victims of sexual exploitation and trafficking.
  • Organized 2 upazila workshops with 10 doctors and 40 nurses and community health workers to understand that sexually exploited and trafficked women and adolescent girls needs to be dealt with special care and linking them with the Information Health Booth.
  • Reorganized the existing 10 Community Watch Committees (CWCs) in 10 unions of 2 upazilas namely Debhata and Kaliganj upazilas in Satkhira district.
  • Organized 10 motivational workshops with CWCs to address health risks and consequences of victims of sexual exploitation and trafficking in women and adolescent girls and explaining the functioning of the Hotline Health Cards so that they can refer and bring the victims to the Health Information Booth.
  • About 50 awareness raising meetings with Commnity Watch Committess have been organized.
  • About 100 follow-up meetings of Community Watch Committee (CWC) have been organized.
  • About 188 victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation were provided healthcare services at Niramoy Information Health Booth and among them 15 were referred to government hospital sin Satkhira district
  • Continuous liaison and cooperation developed between CWCS and Community Watch Committees (CWCs) and 57 victims were referred by CWC members.
  • About 36,160 community people including men, women, adolescents and children made aware about the issues of health risks and consequences of trafficking and sexual exploitation

V. Motivational Training for Youth Volunteers to Promote Safe Migration and to Combat Human Trafficking

The project entitled Motivational Training for Youth Volunteers to Promote Safe Migration and to Combat Human Trafficking was initiated in September 2011 - August 2012 with the financial assistance of The American Centre, Dhaka. Geographically the project covered 4 districts of Bangladesh namely Chapai Nawabgonj, Cox’s Bazar, Jessore and Satkhira.

Project goal and objectives:

The project goal is mainly to promote safe migration and to combat human trafficking. Specific objectives are capacity building of grassroots level Youth Volunteers to address the issues of safe migration and trafficking, creating awareness among school going students about human trafficking, sensitizing teachers and guardians to combat human trafficking and lastly to compliment the work of Counter Trafficking Committees set up by the Ministry of Home Affairs at district, upazila and union levels.

Project activities:

  • Two day long 4 district level Motivational Training with 80 Youth Volunteers (college going students) balancing gender at 4 districts namely Chapai Nawabgonj, Cox,s Bazar, Jessore and Satkhira. who were motivated about the causes, mode of procurement and consequences of trafficking as well as safe migration and unsafe migration and nexus between unsafe migration and trafficking
  • National Seminar with participation of 80 trained Youth Volunteers of 4 districts, partner NGOs and higher government officials of concerned ministries and representatives of INGOs to inform them about initiatives of Bangladesh government and non-governmental organizations in promoting safe migration and preventing human trafficking by high government officials of concerned ministries as well as representatives of INGOs and national NGOs.
  • Trained Youth Volunteers conducted awareness campaigns in 160 schools of four districts and 48,000 students and 300 teachers were sensitized about safe migration and causes and consequences of human trafficking to work towards prevention.

VI. 2011 Floods in Debhata and Kaliganj Upazilas in Satkhira district: Relief and Healthcare Support

The project 2011 Floods in Debhata and Kaliganj Upazilas in Satkhira district: Relief and Healthcare Support was initiated in October- December 2011 with financial support of Anesvad Foundation, Spain. Geographically the project covered 30 villages in 4 unions namely Debhata, Kulia, Parulia, Nowapara under Debhata upazila and one union namely Nalta under Kaliganj upzila in Satkhira district which are traffic prone areas and women, adolescent girls and children are in a state of vulnerability having lost their livelihood activities and can easily be allured by better offers in neighbouring countries.

Project goal and objectives:

  • To identify and reach out to the poorest of the poor especially female headed households with young children
  • To provide food support and personal healthcare facilities to the most affected vulnerable families
  • To provide healthcare services and medicines to those who are suffering from various diseases
  • To improve the overall health status of the affected families by creating health awareness among the affected families.

Project activities:

Activity 1.1 Rapid Health Need Assessment: An assessment was conducted in the most affected project areas namely Debhata, Kulia, Parulia and Nowapara unions in Debhata upazila and Nalta union in Kaligonj upazila. The assessment identified the 1,200 most vulnerable affected families, focusing on the types of diseases they were suffering, needed healthcare services and medicines, type of food support and baby food, bed sheets and mosquito nets that should be provided.

Activity 1.2 Operating 14 health camps in 13 wards covering 30 villages of 5 unions under two upazilas namely Debhata and Kaliganj: 14 health camps set up and conducted at regular intervals by qualified doctors and health workers in 13 wards covering 30 villages to provide healthcare services to the affected families

Activity 1,3 Medical Check-up, free distribution of medicines and follow-up of the patients in 30 villages: At the Health Camps water purifying tablets, intravenous saline, oral dehydration saline, other necessary medicines were free of cost to the flood affecgted families who were suffering from various health problems in 30 villages.

Activity 1.4 Food support to affected families in 30 villages: Safe drinking water, rice, lentils, potatoes, cooking oil, salt, spices, sugar etc.were distributed among 1,200 flood affected families and 400 selected mothers having children of 1,200 famlies were given infants milk powder and baby food.

Activity 1.5 Distribution of bed sheets and mosquito nets in 30 villages: Bed sheets and mosquito nets were supplied as preventive messages against dengue and other diseases which are caused by stagnant water logging and garbage dumps.

Activity 2.1 Conducting two-day health awareness training for affected families in 14 villages under 7 health camps: Two-day health awareness trainings were conducted by community health workers in 14 villages under 7 health camps to create awareness and educate the flood affected families, especially women and young girls on personal hygiene, household sanitation, environmental cleanliness, waste management, preventive measures against infectious diseases.

Activity 2.2 Conducting two-day health awareness training for affected families in the remaining 16 villages under 7 health camps: Two-day health awareness trainings were conducted by community health workers in 16 villages under 7 health camps to create awareness and educate the flood affected families, especially women and young girls on personal hygiene, household sanitation, environmental cleanliness, waste management, preventive measures against infectious diseases.

VII. Integrated Health service oriented referral system for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation in Sathkira district, Bangladesh.

The project entitled Integrated health service oriented referral system for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in Vulnerable Situation in Sathkira district, Bangladesh was initiated in March 2012 – December 2013 with the financial assistance of the Anesvad Foundation. Geographically the project covered 4 upazilas namely Debhata and Kaliganj, Kalaroa and Satkhira Sadar upaizlas of Satkhira district.
Since 2014, CWCS is providing free healthcare, counseling and shelter services for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation by their own contribution.

Project goal and objectives:

General Objective: To enable the right to health of victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulberable situaiton in Satkhira district, Bangladesh.
Specific Objective: To improve an integrated health services oriented referral system by MoHFW, law enforcing agencies, and NGOs (duty bearers) for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation (rights bearers) in Satkhira district, Bangladesh

Strategies and activities:

Strategy 1: Enabled access to quality information and services directed to victims of trafficking and sexaul exploitation and those in vulnerable situation (right holders).
Activity 1.1: Continuation of the provision of integrated health services through the Information Health Booth and the specialized hotline services to address health risks and consequences of victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation in Debhata and Kaliganj upazilas as well as the extension of such services to Satkhira Sadar and Kalaroa upazilas: About 364 victims were provided healthcare services at IHB through referral system with government hospitals and NGO facilities till December 2013.
Activity 1.2: Establishment of a transit shelter facility for victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation referred by police, Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB), health services, government officials and other stakeholders: 84 victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation stayed on an average two-three days in the transit shelter facility. Since its establishment in March 2012, about 127 victims/survivors were provided food, healthcare services, recreation facilities, made aware about the issues of trafficking and sexual exploitation and safe return to home.
Activity 1.3: Providing counseling services at the Information Health Booth to victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation: About 355 victims were provided counseling services at the Information Health Booth till December 2013.
Activity 1.4: Printing and distribution of IEC materials namely 10,000 brochures, 15,000 posters, 23,000 hotline health cards, 5,000 folders and 5,000 note pads to promote integrated healthcare services for the victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation.
Activity 1.5: Designing and hosting of 14 billboards in prominent places like market places and bordering areas of the 4 upazilas namely Debhata, Kaliganj, Kalaroa and Satkhira Sadar as well as at the hospital premises of these upazilas of Satkhira district with messages of health risks and consequences of victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation including hotline mobile numbers of Information Health Booth.
Activity 1.6: Organizing 90 community awareness meetings on health risks and consequences of victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation through folk songs in 20 unions of the 4 upazilas attended by 75,101 women, girls, men and children.
Activity 1.7: Organizing 70 anti-trafficking and health risks awareness school campaigns with primary, secondary and madrasah students in 4 upazilas being attended by 6,964 students.
Activity 1.8: Organizing 90 courtyard meetings with Village Women and Adolescent Girls in remote rural areas being attended by 2,700 women and young girls.
Activity 1.9: Organizing 100 vulnerable women awareness meetings on health risks and consequences of victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation - 40 vulnerable women awareness meetings with women micro-credit groups; 20 meetings with Vulnerable Group Development (VGD); 20 Meetings with Vulnerable Group Feeding (VGF) card holders and 20 Meetings with Rural Employment Opportunities for Public Agents (REOPA) groups in 4 upazilas being attended by 3,284 vulnerable women.
Activity 1.10: Facilitating income generating activities for victims of trafficking sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation. About 25 victims of trafficking were provided with 3 day training on goats and ducks rearing and 10 women were provided with 2 goats each and 15 women were provided with 10 ducks each so that they will be economically empowered with their involvement in Income Generating Activities (IGA). At present many of them are not perceived as burden of the family rather they are earning money by selling eggs of ducks and increasing number of goats.

Strategy 2: Promoted concerted efforts and improved coordination among Community Watch Committee members ( health service providers, law enforcing agencies, NGOs and Counter Trafficking Committees at district, upazila and union levels (duty bearers).
Activity 2.1: Forming 10 Community Watch Committees (CWCs) each consisting of 30 members which included Chairman and members of Union Parishad, professionals, village police, lawyers, doctors, community leaders, social workers, journalists and other community members in 10 unions of 2 upazilas namely Kalaroa and Satkhira Sadar of Satkhira district.
Activity 2.2: Organizing 10 motivational workshops in 10 unions of Kalaroa and Satkhira Sadar with CWCs to address health risks and consequences of victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation being attended by 295 local government representatives, professional, law enforcing agencies and community people.
Activity 2.3: Organizing 80 bi-monthly follow-up meetings to maintain continued liaison between CWCS and the newly formed 10 Community Watch Committees at Kalaroa and Satkhira Sadar upazilas.
Activity 2.4: Organizing 50 quarterly follow-up meetings to maintain continued liaison between CWCS and the existing 10 Community Watch Committees at Debhata and Kaliganj upazilas.
Activity 2.5: Organizing 4 advocacy meetings with MoHFW representatives at district level in order to start integration of health services directed to victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation.

Strategy 3: Increased Capacity and involvement of health service providers (duty bearers) to enable the provision of integrated health services directed to victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation and those in vulnerable situation (right holder)
Activity 3.1: Undertaken quick listing of a total of health care facilities namely 5 hospitals under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), 22 Community Clinics and 9 Union Health and Family Welfare Centres including the number of doctors and nurses available in the 10 unions of Satkhira Sadar and Kalaroa upazilas.
Activity 3.2: Organizing 4 sensitization and motivational workshops being attended by 14 doctors, 17 nurses and 31 Community Health Workers under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) at the Information Health Booth.
Activity 3.3: Organizing half-yearly 8 follow-up meetings with doctors, nurses and Community Health Workers of 4 upazilas each at the Information Health Booth - 2 follow-up meetings per upazila.
Activity 3.4: Coordination and liaison with community clinic staff under Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) while organizing 16 quarterly awareness raising meetings with women beneficiaries being attended by the community clinics in the 4 upazilas – 4 Community Clinics per upazila being attended by 7,985 women beneficiaries.

Major achievements of the project:

  • Women-friendly environment and confidentiality have drawn of victims to come to Niramoy Information Health Booth in Parulia, Debhata upazila, Satkhira district who have not gone to any public or private hospitals even though they were suffering from various diseases for many months.
  • Referral system developed at Satkhira district in providing integrated healthcare services to the victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation among government hospitals, NGO facilities and Information Health Booth.
  • Unidentified victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation were identified and received necessary healthcare services.
  • Health service providers of Satkhira Sadar Hospital and Upazila Health Complexes are sensitized to provide healthcare services to the victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation.
  • Community based prevention and protection system developed in some areas in Satkhira district and 20 victims of trafficking rescued.
  • Victims received confidential healthcare services at Information Health Booth and encouraged other victims to receive such healthcare services.


Gateway to Employment and Economic Empowerment for Survivors of Trafficking, 2011- 2013

Objective of the project:
Empowerment of survivors and potential victims of trafficking, sexual exploitation through improvement of their socio-economic condition.

Background of the project:
During 2007-2008, CWCS conducted an extensive research study on State of Trafficking in Women and Children and their Sexual Exploitation Bangladesh with the financial assistance of Anesvad Foundation, Spain. We have been able to locate 607 victims/survivors living with their families and they all identified lack of livelihood options and employment opportunities that had been main driving push factors to compel women and young girls to fall prey to the lucrative offers of the traffickers and to be re-trafficked in some cases.
Extensive efforts are being taken to empower women and girls but they are least likely to participate in social mobilization and thus enable to access services and programmes that would enhance their situation. Women and girl victims/survivors are not aware of their rights and often fear of stigmatization from their family, community and society at large. Traffickers play on the fears of victims who know reporting against the perpetrators is dangerous and will bring more harm, open up more opportunities for traffickers to operate with complete impunity.
In the backdrop, CWCS want to address the issue in a holistic approach. CWCS envisions empowering the survivors by providing in-service training through job-placement to reduce their socio-economic vulnerability, healthcare services, legal support and to train them as peer motivators to aware young women and adolescent girls about the underlying dynamics of trafficking episodes in the lives of victims and the grave consequences. To meet the purpose, Centre for Women and Children Studies (CWCS) launched Traffic Survivors Foundation along with commemoration of International Women’s Day on 10 March in 2011. Traffic Survivors Foundation is an innovative imitative to provide employment for socio-economic empowerment of the survivors of trafficking in women and girls.

Project period:
April 2011- December 2011, January- December 2012 & January- December 2013 Activities of the project:
Activity 1:
Identification of survivors/potential victims of trafficking of Satkhira district, in-service training and job placement in the garment factory at Dhaka:

  • A total of 148 survivors and potential victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation such as victims of domestic violence and those who were suffering from extreme poverty were placed in jobs at The Ananta Garment factory at Ashulia in Dhaka. Among 148 women and girls 38 were placed in 2011, 50 were placed in 2012 and 60 were placed in 2013.
  • An agreement signed with between guardians of survivors or potential victims and Centre for Women and Children Studies regarding their job placement in Dhaka.
Package services provided to these women and girls by CWCS:
After final selection, CWCS conduct medical check-up of survivors and potential victims to check their fitness for work. Then, qualified 4 women and girls are brought to Dhaka along with one female staff. CWCS bears bus fare and other transportation cost of the survivors and help them to get rented residence. Designated staff also cooperate them to be employed in Ananta Garment Factory by commutating with concerned authority. Women and girls are also provided their necessary utensils and appliances for cooking food, one month cost of their food and a dress.

Moreover, one female CWCS staff is engaged to maintain continuous liaison and communication with the authority of garment factory, survivors and their family members left at home for the well being of the survivors. There is a 24 hour hotline number at CWCS office to communicate with concerned CWCS staff and key stakeholders. Survivors, their guardians and authority of the garment factory can communicate for any urgent need at any time and CWCS rush to provide necessary support. CWCS staff monitors the women and girls’ status who were placed in jobs in garment factory and negotiate with concerned garment official to ensure their optimum benefit. Activity 2:
Organized 60 (20 +20 + 20) Courtyard meetings with women and girls in remote villages on the issues of trafficking and sexual exploitation as well as rehabilitation of victims by providing them job placement in garment factory:
  • About 1814 vulnerable village women and girls attended in Debhata, Kaliganj, Satkhira Sadar and Kalaroa upazilas.
  • About 32 victims were identified by the participants of the courtyard meetings who were placed in garment factory.