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Tackling sex trafficking of children (GFEMS)

Terre des Hommes Netherlands is collaborating with the Global Fund to End Modern Slavery to tackle child trafficking and child sexual exploitation in East Africa. This collaboration is part of the Global Fund’s partnership with the U.S. Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. The two projects are based in Kenya and Uganda with a focus on skills development and livelihoods for survivors and community-based prevention of child sexual exploitation (CSE), respectively.

Kenya: Building a future

In Kenya, the partnership will focus on implementing community-based prevention methods, formal education for young survivors (9-15 years), vocational skills training, apprenticeships and job skilling for older survivors (16-18 years), and improvement of household livelihoods for the most vulnerable families of survivors of child sexual exploitation (CSE). Targeting known CSE hotspot locations in coastal Kenya, the project works to address both the supply of vulnerable individuals and the enabling environment that allows trafficking to persist.

On the supply side, the project aims to reduce vulnerability of survivors and children to  exploitation. For young survivors, the project will reintegrate participants into formal education with additional support services such as provision of school supplies, access to social protection programs, and training for teachers on how best to identify and report CSE and support survivors. For older child survivors, the project will focus on job skilling and facilitate job placement with partner companies. This will include enrollment in vocational skills training or apprenticeship programs, market-based job placement and continued training opportunities, and coaching and mentoring for survivors. 

Addressing the enabling environment, community leaders will be trained to engage through community led dialogues to address the deep rooted negative social norms that contribute to CSE.

Learn more about the Building a Future project (Kenya)

Uganda: Community action to end child trafficking and sexual exploitation

In Uganda, GFEMS and Terre des Hommes Netherlands are focusing on community-based prevention of CSE by establishing and enforcing child protection regulatory frameworks from the national level to the community level. Targeting the Karamoja region, the project aims to reduce the supply of individuals vulnerable to CSE and address the enabling environment in the region.

On the supply side, the project will work to: 

  • Draft and lobby for the ratification of Child Protection Ordinance and by-laws in four sub-counties of Napak District, Karamoja.
  • Identify and train Child Protection Champions (i.e., community leaders, religious and cultural leaders, and local private sector actors) to serve as models for child protection and support awareness raising initiatives. 
  • Support over 30 schools in building their capacity to identify, respond to, and follow up on cases of child trafficking/CSE and to promote child protection and empowerment more broadly.
  • Promote community awareness of CSE and positive behaviours through a variety of mixed-media interventions addressing the following topics: 1) Awareness-raising on CSE and prevention programming, 2) the popularisation of the Ordinance and by-laws, and 3) the promotion of child-friendly social norms.

Addressing the enabling environment, the project will work to counter the negative social norms that perpetuate and support child trafficking and CSE, through interconnected community dialogue and engagement activities. Subjects addressed will include the importance of education for children, especially girls; what communities and families can do to protect children, and how to prevent stigma and discrimination against survivors. Male involvement in these dialogues is key, as men are the "consumers/clients” of CSE and the primary household decision makers, especially regarding education. 

Incorporated into the programming agenda, throughout the course of the two projects, GFEMS and Terre des Hommes Netherlands will seek to understand whether targeted community engagement can effectively promote positive behaviour change.

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