Treating only the symptoms of a disease will do little if the root cause is not explored and cured. The same stands true for abuse and trafficking. Without treating the root causes of trafficking that include ignorance, illiteracy, gender discrimination, and gender violence, putting an end to abuse and trafficking is an impossible task. Thus, the advocacy and awareness program of Maiti Nepal aims to address the root causes of trafficking.
Emphasis on advocacy programs at the point of origin encourages the community to build early warning and support systems to prevent child and women trafficking. These programs focus on adolescent girls, students, teachers, Village Development Committees, and the entire community. Children and women are trained on anti-trafficking measures so that they can avoid being tricked and enticed by strangers who come to their village attempting to lure them.
Mass awareness campaigns, orientations, and training conducted in communities are part of the advocacy and awareness program. These programs focus on training school teachers and students to form anti-human-trafficking groups. It also establishes information and resource centers, organizes community outreach programs, conducts cross-sectorial meetings, links, and networks with other agencies working against trafficking and other forms of sexual exploitations.
Likewise, the program also educates communities about human trafficking and other forms of exploitation including risks faced by their daughters and sisters at the hands of traffickers.
Different mediums are utilized to spread advocacy and awareness about the importance of humanitarian causes and women’s rights. Maiti Nepal has been conducting various advocacy and awareness, some of which are –
- Organizing orientation programs amongst police personnel to improve the coordination between border staff and the police force
- Interaction program with women’s group against gender-based violence
- MPAC (Municipality Planning Advisory Committee) meeting with government and non-government stakeholders and various delegates
- Orientation to youth groups (adolescent girls and boys) on safe migration
- Organizing cross-border meetings with concerned COSOs of India on issues of human trafficking, safe migration, collaborative approach for rapid rescue and repatriation, and the way forward
- Public service announcements on the situation of domestic violence and human trafficking amidst the COVID-19 pandemic broadcasted through local television and radios
- Organizing interaction with the District Committee to Control Human Trafficking (DCCHT) as part of the lobbying and advocacy program of Maiti Nepal
- Organizing door-to-door awareness campaign against domestic violence, sexual exploitation, and human trafficking
- Interaction program about human trafficking, unsafe migration, and rescue process conducted among lawyers, province police, and organizations
- Media interaction program along with training to teachers against human trafficking and safe migration
- Consultation and discussion meetings with concerned stakeholders against commercial sexual exploitation of children