In a remarkable collaboration, Vukarhani Trust, a renowned local nonprofit organization, has joined forces with the Center for Combating Human Trafficking at Bindura University to conduct a groundbreaking livelihood survivor training program. This initiative aims to empower survivors of human trafficking and provide them with essential skills for sustainable livelihoods.
The program, which kicked off earlier this month, is designed to address underlying issues faced by survivors and equip them with the necessary tools to rebuild their lives.
“The main purpose and objective of the the livelihood survival training is to equip and capacity build the women who are survivors of trafficking to be able to fend for themselves and have basic survival skills. Hence, the training had an emphasis on practical courses that they are able to apply in their immediate environment. The courses were beekeeping jam and sweet making, and also bead and jewelry making. They were making bags using the beads, and the different kinds of things that they could make with the beads.
“The Vukarhani Trust in partnership with the Center for Combating Human Trafficking at Bendura University launched a program, Head Call Healing and Restoration of Diggity to check at lives. We aim to rehabilitate reintegrate and bring restoration of dignity to check at lives of survivors of human trafficking. The first two courses were short courses on business training where participants covered seven modules in basic business training management and the last one that we had was livelihood survival training skills they were trained in beekeeping, jam and sweet making, and bead and jewelry making,” remarked Gerald Shirichena, the Vukarhani Director.
The partnership between Vukarhani Trust and the Center for Combating Human Trafficking signifies a significant step forward in the fight against human trafficking. By combining their expertise and resources, the organizations aim to reach a broader audience and expand their impact in combatting this heinous crime.
The livelihood survivor training program covers a wide range of vocational skills, including entrepreneurship, and marketing.
“The major topics were how to make for instance jam, sweets, and sour drinks. Also how to market those. That is the same with beekeeping, how to make the hives, to maintain the hives, and the general management and the marketing of the honey. the same with the making of bags and the jewelry out of beads,” said Shirichena.
Furthermore, the collaboration between Vukarhani Trust and the Center for Combating Human Trafficking goes beyond the training program. Both organizations have established a support network that will continue to provide guidance and assistance to the survivors long after the program’s completion.
The impact of this initiative has already been felt by the survivors. One participant, Sarah (name changed for privacy), expressed her gratitude for the opportunity and the supportive environment of the program.
“I never thought I would have a chance to rebuild my life after the horrors I experienced. This program has given me hope and the skills I need to create a better future for myself,” she shared with a smile.
The ultimate goal of the livelihood survivor training program is not only to promote individual empowerment but also to raise awareness about human trafficking and its devastating consequences within the community. By educating the public and breaking down stigmas, the program aims to prevent future instances of trafficking and contribute to the creation of a society that is safe, supportive, and free from exploitation.
“Having awareness of human trafficking is key in the prevention of this heinous crime. When people are aware and conscious of what human trafficking is they are able to protect themselves. Friends and family and the neighbors from traffickers who take advantage of the people. So the empowering program for survivors protects them from being retrafficked. In the event that they want to relocate or migrate to another country, they will have basic survival skills that they can base on rather than just going to become a maid. At least when they are empowered to do some practical skills. They will be able to do something for themselves. They will be able to do those things at home and reduce the risk of being trafficked…” added Shirichena.
The successful implementation of this livelihood survivor training program serves as a beacon of hope for survivors and a reminder that compassionate collaboration can create lasting change. Through programs like these, individuals like Sarah can rewrite their stories, reclaim their lives, and inspire others to persevere in the face of adversity.
“…the training of survivors is a milestone for both in the organisations that are working with the survivors and then the lives of survivors, themselves. Because you would see that many of the survivors, had never been at any academic Institution of the magnitude of Bindura University. This motivated them to want to study and learn more. Some of them were even asked to bring out their qualifications, and what exactly they can do to further their education so that they minimize the risk of being trafficked. And also some were asking for their children, for their siblings because it was eye-opening. So the training programs for survivors do not only equip them, but they also inspire them to move on, to do something better, and to see the other side of life. Because the traffickers made them see that side that they thought was greener yet it was not.
So the lives of human trafficking survivors can be changed for the better if many of these trainings are done that suit their needs, trainings that do not take them out of their environment, but things that they can do right there in their communities. Bundura University has got so many short courses that we think the other survivors would like to include some of those courses, for example, Animal Husbandry, and Goat dissemination programs. These are some of the things that the survivors can be equipped with and they can do this work earning a living In the communities where they come from,” remarked Shirichena.