Community Stabilization Programme Fuses Income Generation and Drama Skills Training to Combat Human Trafficking

27 September 2010 | Uncategorized

Pretoria – IOM Pretoria in partnership with the Mothertongue Project has produced “Sold Inside”, a documentary that portrays the experiences of 26 beneficiaries of an innovative income-generation programme. The 30-minute documentary relates the experiences of participants who received grants to establish small income-generating activities and highlights the theatre skills training undertaken as part of the programme.

The project, which targeted women aged 16 to 30 years from four of South Africa’s provinces including Eastern Cape, Mpumalanga, Limpopo and KwaZulu Natal, aimed at addressing the very factors which make these rural women vulnerable to trafficking, through the creation of sustainable income generating activities.

As part of the programme, beneficiaries also received theatre training designed to empower the women through drama skills and to instill the confidence essential to starting their own businesses.

The documentary, “Sold Inside” showcases public performances of skits with trafficking themes and performed by the women at locations such as schools, market places and public transport areas. The documentary will be used as an additional counter-trafficking outreach tool for organizations and individuals in the region, especially in areas where literacy levels are low.

“I had never done drama before, I had never been in front of a large audience acting. I am feeling proud to teach people the knowledge they didn’t know about trafficking, even me, I didn’t know about human trafficking before,” said a beneficiary from the Eastern Cape. All the participants are now conducting outreach to schools, churches, market places and in other public spaces in their communities to educate people about human trafficking.

To ensure ongoing mentoring and support for the beneficiaries, IOM partnered with NGOs in the four provinces including the Barnabas Trust in the Eastern Cape, Nelspruit Community Forum in Mpumalanga, and Centre for Positive Care in Limpopo and the KwaZulu Regional Christian Council in KwaZulu Natal. These four NGOs provided both basic and advanced business skill training to programme participants. The NGOs continue to play a pivotal role in ensuring the sustainability of the business ventures due to their physical presence and local knowledge in the respective provinces.

From interviews conducted with the participants, it is clear that the economic stabilization project has been more than an economic empowerment exercise; it has transformed the women as individuals. One beneficiary from KwaZulu Natal said, “The training has helped me a lot…I am now running a catering business and I already catered for a birthday party and made a good profit.” She hopes to start her own restaurant before the end of the year and has already identified three possible locations for her restaurant.

The project was administered by IOM’s Southern African Counter Trafficking Assistance Programme (SACTAP) with funding from the US government’s Bureau for Population, Refugees and Migration.

“Sold Inside” can be viewed at: http://iom.org.za/soldinside.mpg.

For more information, contact:
Susan Verwayen
IOM Pretoria

Tel: 012 342 2789
E-mail: sverwayen@iom.int