Creating HER FUTURE.
Education prevents exploitation.
We currently support the education of over 500 survivors and high-risk girls. This education empowers girls to choose their own career path. Many opt for social services, medical fields, law enforcement and other engaged work that allows them to give back.
End the cycle of slavery.
Child survivors of slavery and kids born into brothel communities are destined to grow up and repeat the cycle unless given an education to build a different kind of life.
Out of the 250+ girls who have gone through our education program and completed grade 10, not a single one has been trafficked into slavery or re-trafficked, even though their backgrounds make them extremely high risk.
EDUCATION PROGRAM DETAILS
Early 2022 Her Future will have a new home in Kolkata – a learning center offering a myriad of training programs, classes, support services and workshops to hundreds of survivors and vulnerable women and teens from the red light areas, urban slums and rescue shelters where we have been working since 2007.
Every person who comes to the center will learn about human rights, women’s rights and the laws designed to protect these rights, so that she can advocate for herself and others, thus becoming less vulnerable to trafficking and exploitation.
The purpose of the new center is to bridge the gap between trafficking (or shelter care, or growing up in a marginalized community) and a successful, fulfilling life. In our new home, we will help more girls move beyond the very limited options life has given them so far, to create their own bright futures.
The Freedom School, aka Hasta Memorial School, was founded by survivor-activist and author (Anjali Tamang. The school is opened in Fall 2021 to provide education and prevent trafficking in Nuwakot, a region of Eastern Nepal with a severe child trafficking problem. The project will employ many survivors and will provide counseling and vocational training to parents to provide alternatives to sending daughters to the brothels of India. When complete, this project will educate 350 children.
Through our three Red Light Resource Centers, in partnership with local organization South Kolkata Hamari Muskan, we provide school sponsorships, after-school tutoring, counseling, and a safe space to study and relax after school for 300 children born into red light districts of Kolkata. The Resource Centers keep girls safe while their mothers are seeing clients, and offer a pathway out of second generation trafficking.
Through our partnership with EkTara School, we are able to support the education of 150 girls from Kolkata’s largest slum communities. Before EkTara came into the area, girls in this very poor, traditional Muslim migrant community were rarely sent to school, and were at high risk for child marriage, trafficking, or child labor. Now they are receiving life-changing, top quality education. Their mothers have been given vocational training, and we were able to provide manny months of food support to the students’ families during the strict COVID lockdowns, when no one was allowed to work.
We sponsor the education of 30+ girls at The Shristi Gyan/Apple of God’s Eyes School in Kathmandu. The school educates survivors of trafficking and high risk girls, many of whom come from indigenous, rural communities with a very high rate of child trafficking. The project also includes 5 homes where survivors and high risk girls can grow up in a safe, loving family environment. Many of our sponsored kids in Kathmandu are now in college or graduate school and we are proud to sponsor their education as far as they are able to go.
Through our newest education program, we will be partnering with Suchana to provide school support, a mobile library, computer education, counseling and trafficking awareness to 55 indigenous girls from the Avadasi and Santal communities of Bengal, India. Adavasi have the lowest development indicators of any groups in India – they have had access to education for only a generation; life expectancy is lowest; and poverty levels are highest. Young indigenous people are particularly vulnerable to exploitation in a number of ways. They are vulnerable to the risks inherent in migration for work in very insecure conditions. For girls, the processes through which they enter domestic labour opportunities is often akin to trafficking and there are high risks of sexual exploitation. For those that remain at home, early marriage is the standard answer In the wake of Covid lockdowns and the ongoing school closure, whole year groups of girls have had no education at all for a year, and many will never return to school unless they are helped to do so.
Through our longstanding partnership with Womens Interlink Foundation, we sponsor the education and shelter room and board of 60 girls each year, at the Nijoloy rescue shelters in Kolkata and Jalpaiguri (built by HFC in 2015 and expanded in 2017). We have built strong relationships with these girls over many years. Many of them were rescued at a young age and will stay at the shelter until they reach adulthood and can stand firmly on their own feet. Girls in these homes have been rescued from sex trafficking, labor trafficking, child marriage, or were living alone on railway platforms or born into brothel communities. It is incredible to be part of the healing that has transpired in their lives since joining the program. We have high hopes for their futures!