LIFELINE: HELP FOR COMMERCIAL SEX WORKERS AND OTHER MARGINALIZED WOMEN
The project has reveived the following project support from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Government of Finland.
2010 55,292 €
2011 49,101 €
2012 49,610 €
Total 154,003 €
The project has been extended for the period 2013-2014.
The direct objective of the project is to help women from the North Bengal region, who are working in commercial sex due to poverty or human trafficking, by providing them possibility for vocational training which gives them technical, handicraft and entrepreneurship skills. After training and rehabilitation they will start to earn steady income throughout the produced handicrafts.
At present there are great numbers of NGOs in India working towards raising awareness of the importance of educating the girl child. India statistics show a significant increase in girl child education in the past few years. However, the girls of “yesterday” did not have much of an opportunity to get an education and therefore they have very little chances to have decent jobs. The situation is worse when the woman is a widow and does not have anyone to support her. This all applies to families in the North Bengal region especially in rural areas. In addition, the rising need for financial stability and independence is also forcing many women to give in to the ever booming flesh trade. It is a bitter truth that is shamefully being accepted by many in poverty stricken homes and villages all over the country.
Waasta, Indian NGO, operates in North Bengal’s rural areas and it has the office in the city of Siliguri. SiIiguri is rapidly growing city throughout emigration. Sadly over the recent years Siliguri is known to be one of the main transit points of human trafficking from Nepal to India and other countries. The red-light-district in Siliguri called Khalpara has become a main hub of trafficking and prostitution.
Waasta has vision for skill development and income generating programs for these vulnerable women from North Bengal. Therefore it has been running two different development projects Kalakriti – vocational training program for vulnerable women and Rahab – work among commercial sex workers and their children. Now Waasta wants to combine these projects and have a new project, which provides help chain for these women. This would be a program, which gives possibilities for women to come out from brothels or crises, and provides handicraft and other skills that will give steady daily income.
The overall goal of this project is to assist vulnerable and marginalized young women especially those who are working in commercial sex and who have very little or no education to break free from the cycle of poverty.