Prevention occurs in many ways, namely education about trafficking to those who are at increased risk. The Freedom Project educates through programs within our project areas that cater to children to understand the risks and also to parents /carers of children who are at risk.
Prevention also occurs through our preschool where 'at risk' children can attend, & our soccer program for young boys.
Further, in Thailand, Philippines and Burma whilst we primarily rescue, there have been a number of children brought to us by their families to avoid having them conscripted into the harsh conditions of child soldiering.
Rescue can be multi-faceted and very specific to the type of trafficking a child is trapped in. For child soldiers there are lengthy negotiations between militants and the ground team in handing children over for education -something that is of value to them for the children in their possession. For sex & labour traffic victims an investigative team exists to work with local law enforcements which then often follows with raids etc. Relationship in all situations are key! The team must get alongside sometimes the perpetrators in order to negotiate or with local authorities to ensure successful rescues.
Rehabilitation is long and difficult and so commitment to those who have been victimised is so important. They need shelter, food, compassion, understanding and help in having a new way of living. Trust must be rebuilt with people, particularly adults. All children rescued in our programs are provided a safe house where they can be given the care, protection and help they need. Often new skills or general education are taught to them. This provides purpose, meaning and new and healthy ways of living. Many children are reunited with their families if it is safe to do so.
Education is a key tool in working against and ending human trafficking. Whilst it is a prevention tool within the project regions it is an awareness tool back here in Australia. The Freedom Project enters schools, universities and any interest groups in order to raise the understanding in the general community of the issues in human trafficking. Awareness is key! We must stop the demand in order to combat the supply.