Rehabilitation of Trafficking Victims – The Self-reliance Model of SREI Foundation

by Alexander Griffin
Rehabilitation of Trafficking Victims

The link between child-marriages and human trafficking is more prominent now than ever before. Research supports that child-marriages mimic trafficking in their slave like treatment of young women who are forced to opt out of education to marry and have to undergo abuse physically, mentally and emotionally.

Most women who are stuck in this cycle of repeated violation of their rights are unable to grow out of it because they are financially dependent on the abuser. The pandemic has further led young girls to access social media more frequently than before, getting them to fall prey to older men who coax and trap them with false promises online.

The Swayangsiddha Scheme

The Swayangsiddha scheme, implemented in West Bengal, aims at equipping young boys and girls with necessary acumen and awareness that can prevent them from being exploited by the ill impact of child-marriage.

However, when it comes to human trafficking, just prevention is not enough. It is equally important to rescue victims who have been terrorized, forced or blackmailed into abusive situations and to ensure that they have a support system that allows them to lead a life of dignity.

Role of SREI in Rehabilitation of Rescued Trafficking Victims

Headed by Shri Hemant Kanoria who holds the vision of working with the fringe and underprivileged sections of society, the SREI foundation is dedicated to the cause of empowering women. Not many moons ago, the organization worked in association with the North 24 Parganas Police Department and Goranbose Gram Bikas Kendra (GGBK), an NGO based in Rajarhat, and donated funds that were required for the rehabilitation of 22 victims of trafficking in the South 24 Parganas district of West Bengal.

These funds were used in making these victims self-reliant in diverse ways. Some victims were helped by funding inventories of ready-made garments that they could sell and make money out of, while others were trained in skills necessary to run a beauty parlor. From managing local grocery stores to cycle vans, these women were trained in a way that made them dependent on themselves and allowed them to break away from the cycle of abuse they were otherwise trapped in.

The initiative has also led to a ripple effect, since many women who were empowered by the movement now lead individual women groups, locally. This has increased communal awareness and greater financial independence of women overall. 

While donations otherwise provide momentary relief to victims, the self-sustenance model that SREI approaches social service in, allows for long-term relief. Specifically, for women, an initiative like the one spoken about above, is a much needed measure since it ensures that not just the present generation but also the future generations are protected from the vices that stem from child-marriage.

Kanoria Foundation and The Bigger Picture

As we step into a world that is increasingly converging towards technology, it is important that the vision for social service broadens from the basics of food, shelter and clothing and embraces the dire need for a change that centers around literacy, accounts for long-term empowerment and is gender-neutral.

Known for its philanthropic service to humanity, the Kanoria foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to such sustainable societal development and service to humanity. Alongside eradicating aspects of poverty and malnutrition, and fostering the world with spirituality, women empowerment is an important pillar of the SREI universe.

 Hemant Kanoria, Trustee – Kanoria Foundation, aligns personally with the organization’s mission and vision, supporting the overall growth of communities in West-Bengal and rest of the country. Much like the implementation of the Swayangsiddha scheme, the organization ensures that change is rooted for not just in policies on paper, but also carried through in the real world.

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