Press Release

Apne Aap’s Official Statement on Delhi Rapist Convictions

New Delhi: “Without police and judicial reform, the December 16 rape convictions may remain a unique result of public outrage. Apne Aap Women Worldwide is against the death sentence, both in principle and because the severity of punishment will not deter rapist. It is the sureness of punishment that will have a bigger impact.

Normally, rape cases take six to eight years to come to trial in India. There are more than 90,000 rape cases pending trial. For those that come to trial, the conviction rate is below four percent. In fact, the same judge, who has convicted the rapists this time, has acquitted charged rapists in all the other 32 rape cases that he has tried!

Imagine the suffering contained in those statistics.

The collusion between the police and judiciary is what creates the culture of impunity in which rape thrives in India. And that is why, in spite of stricter law, sexual assaults continue unabated.

For instance, we have yet to find out what punishment has been meted out to the two policemen patrolling the area at the time of the December rape, where the unlicensed driver was driving a public bus during unlicensed hours. Is it true, as rumored , that this bus was a mobile brothel in off duty hours and the unsuspecting victim boarded what she thought was a real bus? How did an unlicensed bus that was regularly picking up unsuspecting passengers and targeting girls operate in this area for so long?

Or what has happened to the police on duty in Tihar jail, India’s maximum-security prison, when the prime suspect, Ram Singh ‘committed suicide’? Was that the elimination of a witness to police culpability?

Despite the huge media scrutiny and public pressure, the names of policemen on duty in the area at the time of the rape were not revealed until the Delhi High Court issued a direct threat.  The same thing happened last month in the case of a five-year-old girl who was raped in a Delhi slum. The police had offered hush money to the family if they did not file a complaint. Three officers were suspended but no further action was taken against them. The city court has asked the Delhi police to submit a report on action only under pressure from an activist.

Apne Aap Women Worldwide asks for all rape cases to be fast-tracked, and police and judicial accountability instituted for acts of commission and omission in crimes against females. A superior officer should be presumed complicit if disciplinary action is not taken against a subordinate officer for an act of commission or omission.”

For Media inquiries, contact Lindsey@apneaap.org or 646-233-3064.

 

Press Release

Apne Aap organizes ‘Terrace Talks’ session with Ram Rahman

New Delhi, 19th July, 2013:- Apne Aap Women Worldwide, a registered charitable trust in India committed to work towards the empowerment of girls and women today organized its first series of “Terrace Talks” session in collaboration with Rang – A Delhi based community of young artists, at their head-office at India International Centre, New Delhi. The session was moderated by Ram Rahman, a renowned photographer, curator & activist. The theme of the session was on the lines of the history and culture of photography.

The interactive session was organized to reach out to budding artists, photography enthusiasts, academicians and activists to discuss their vision on the art of photography from the contemporary perspective.  An open library set-up was also organized to display Ram Rahman’s collection of photography books. The library showcased these books in a bid to promote visual arts and provide an easy access to those who otherwise have a hard time procuring these exclusive books. The collection will be renewed from time to time.

The cue for the same came from the Open Library established by the Rang team in 2011 which currently has a collection of 600 -700 photo journals, books and catalogues. The members of Rang also participated in the discussion and shared their valuable insights on the theme of the session.

Speaking on the occasion, Abhilasha Kumari, Director Apne Aap said “Apne Aap has initiated the Terrace Talks series to bring together people from different walks of life to discuss and debate issues of social concern by using art as a medium.  We are overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response from the participants and look forward to organize similar sessions in future as well.”

She further added, “These sessions will be organized on a monthly basis to facilitate discussion sessions, workshops, movie screening, exhibitions, panel discussions on subjects of gender issues, society, activism etc.”

Ram Rahman is a passionate activist and has been associated with issues related to the society. During the session, he delved into the works of some famous artists and expounded on how they played a role in shaping history and creating various trends such as futuristic, realism, modernism, surrealism and so on.

Speaking at the session, he said “Photography has had a social connect right through history and has played a big role in changing laws.”

While taking the audience through his collection at the open library, he said, “Young photographers must know why these books are important and how they can impact one’s idea of photography”. He also added, “A picture doesn’t always have to be hugely dramatic; an ordinary picture can be filled with dramatic elements.”

The session concluded with the audience perusing the fascinating range of journals. The library shall remain open to all those enthusiastic about art and photography from Monday to Friday between 9:30 am to 6:00 pm.

About Ram Rahman-

Photojournalist, artist, curator, designer and activist Ram Rahman, initially studied physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Later, Rahman completed a degree in Graphic Design from Yale University’s School of Art in 1979.

Born in 1955, Rahman has shown his photographs in individual and group shows in India and around the world. His most recent solo shows include, ‘Bioscope: Scenes from an Eventful Life’ presented by Bodhi Art at Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi, in 2008; Apparao Infinity, Chennai, in 2007; ‘Photo Studio / Cutouts’ at India International Center, New Delhi, in 2003; and ‘Visions of India: Photographs by Ram Rahman’ at the Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio, in 2002. Amongst his group shows, the most recent are ‘Still Moving Images’ at the Devi Art Foundation, Gurgaon, in 2008; ‘Click: Contemporary Photography from India’ at Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi, in 2007; ‘I Fear, I Believe, I Desire’ at Gallery Espace, New Delhi, also in 2007; and ‘Middle Age Spread at the National Museum, New Delhi, in 2004. Amongst the shows Rahman has curated are ‘Heat – Moving Pictures Visions, Phantasms and Nightmares’ at Bose Pacia, New York, in 2003; ‘Noor – Devyani Krishna, A Retrospective’ at the National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi, in 2000; and ‘Sunil Janah Photographs, A Retrospective’ at Gallery 678, New York, in 1998.

Rahman is one of the founding members of the Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust (SAHMAT) in New Delhi, a leader in the resistance to communal and sectarian forces in India through its public cultural action. The artist lives and works in New Delhi.

 

 

Girls break free from tradition of prostitution, Pass Class X with flying colors

I only want to educate her further so that she can live the way I used to dream of. -Juhi’s Mother

New Delhi, June 8: It was a major milestone in Apne Aap Women Worldwide (AAWW) campaign against prostitution when, on June 5, six girls of the Nat community from red light areas of Forbesgunj and Khawaspur in Bihar, saved from their age old practice of selling sex, passed the secondary school examination of Bihar School Examination Board with flying colors.

The first girls in their lot to receive education, two of them secured first division. AAWW founder Ruchira Gupta described it as “a huge victory for Apne Aap and the mothers of these girls who faced off traffickers against all odds”.

“They have fulfilled their mother’s dreams and hopes that their daughters have a different destiny. They are now a role model for other women and girls and will lead the way in transforming the community and dismantling the system of prostitution,” she said.

The girls and their aggregate marks are: Najmin 356 (71%), Juhi 303 (60%), Kavita 253 (51%), Resham 237 (47%), Poonam 213 (43%), and Pooja 203 (40%).

The achievement is even more significant as the girls demolished the general perception that the locality they come from produces only prostitutes. As a community worker associated with AAWW, Mohammad Kalam said, “The success of these girls has sent out a message that while it place and circumstances of birth are a matter of fate, it is certainly possible for the society and the state to provide the necessary means and opportunities for educating the children born in red light areas so that they are not condemned to a fate their predecessors suffered.”

For want of opportunities and treated with contempt, many Najmins and Juhis never get a chance to show their talent or realise their potential, added Kalam. In the case of these girls, it was made possible through AAWW’s efforts to get a special, 50 per cent quota in Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya (KGBV) in the area for children living in red light areas. AAWW took this up as a programme after the women in prostitution asked for helping their girls get a safe space where they can get their basic right to access education and lead a normal life.

The achievement comes against the backdrop of a long, sustained struggle questioning and challenging the tradition, culture and custom of the community over the years. The Nats are a de-notified tribe who practice intergenerational prostitution. The girls there are groomed to be prostitutes and the boys groomed to become pimps. In the community, pulling girls away from prostitution means closing down the only means of livelihood they know as they have been living off the earnings by selling the girls in the family. There was huge resistance in the community to sending the girls to the schools and especially to a residential school, with several instances of girls being pulled out of school by their parents. They have also had to face unsupportive or hostile local officials. In the face of such odds, the girls’ clearing the schools to embark on a new life with new prospects is a real achievement for them. And for AAWW.

Apne Aap Demands Relief to Victims of Illegal Eviction by Political Goons

Press Release

Kolkata, June 6: On Thursday, June 6, Apne Aap Women Worldwide  organized a jansunwai (public hearing)  in Kolkata to take up the cause of 380 families rendered homeless by forceful eviction that has forced over 1,000 mostly poor people to live in the open and face the threat of human trafficking

The jansunwai was attended, among others, by Miloon Kothari, Founder HLRN and former special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing, UN Human Rights Council; Shivani Chaudhry, Associate Director, Housing and land rights network (HLRN); Professor Malini Bhattacharya, former MP, former-Chairperson, State commission for West Bengal; Anuradha Talwar, Social Activist and Taj Mohammad, Advocate, Calcutta High Court, and Ruchira Gupta founder president of AAWW.

Around 383 families, mostly from a minority community, residing in the Topsia locality near Bridge no. 4 have been rendered homeless for almost seven months after they were evicted from their dwellings. The families, most of whom work as daily wage earners – rickshaw pullers, beggars, rag-pickers – were evicted in November last year.

“Around 380 families residing in the area, mostly from the lower caste Muslim communities, working as rickshaw pullers, daily wage earners, beggars, rag-pickers with an average monthly income between Rs.1500 to Rs.2000 had been forcefully evicted on Nov 10, 2012 with the help of cadres from political party in presence of police without any prior notification. Till date they have not been provided with any rehabilitation, other than a paltry amount of Rs.12,000 per household,” said Anuradha Talwar.

These families have not been able to find any place to stay and currently they are living under the open sky with constant threats of rape and murder from the local hoodlums and criminals.

Ever since the eviction, incidents of trafficking have increased manifold, and the children have stopped attending school. The efforts of the families to get the Police to register cases of missing children are in vain.

Ruchira Gupta said that after the eviction, incidents of trafficking had increased manifold and the children had stopped attending schools. She said four children were reported to be missing after the eviction. She demanded adequate housing for the victims, a creche for children who were forced to drop out of schools and identification of the goons.

“We have not found any place to stay and are living under the open sky with constant threats of rape and murder from local hoodlums and criminals. We don’t have any security of life,” said Seikh Tinko, one of the victim of Topsia eviction. Tinko added, “As of now, four children and one woman have gone missing. One woman has been murdered too.”

“The eviction defied all land acquisition laws,” member of the jury Taj Mohammad, also an advocate, said.

“The vulnerability of the children, especially the girls, is tremendous. They are in constant danger of being trafficked or being subjected to sexual exploitation. The government must immediately arrange for a night shelter for the people who have been evicted so that they do not have to sleep under open sky and a creche where the women can safely keep their children when they go out for work. Adequate housing, which is an integral part of the right to life, must immediately be provided to them,” said Miloon Kothari.

“The government had already mentioned that they would improve the living condition of the people living in the pavement but as a matter of irony they are themselves responsible for ruinment of the condition of these people. Moreover the government is still mum on this matter,” said Talwar.

“Apne Aap Women Worldwide, is looking at creating a civil forum through which we would try to garner support for the victims of eviction in Topsia.The organization also wants an impartial assessment of the case by key civil society members and look for their suggestions and recommendations to take the case of Topsia eviction victims forward through written representations, legal inputs and social action,” said Ruchira Gupta.

“Our purpose is to show the government the plight of the people to take adequate steps in rehabilitating the evicted dwellers so that sex-trafficking can be minimized apart from providing them with a decent living condition,” Gupta added.

Press Release:Hollywood actor Ashton Kutcher spotted at Delhi NGO

 

New Delhi: ‘Two and A Half Men’ star Ashton Kutcher is in the national capital shooting for a biopic on late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. He was spotted spending some quality time with young girls from an NGO dealing with victims of sex trafficking.

The 34-year-old actor will play the lead in the independent movie, to be directed by Joshua Michael Stern, titled ‘Jobs’. ‘Jobs’ centers on the titular figure’s life from when he was a wayward hippie from Northern California until he became the co-founder of Apple.

“Met some powerful girls today in Delhi at Apne Aap: A grassroots movement to end sex trafficking,” Kutcher tweeted on Friday, giving the link to the NGO’s web address – http://www.apneaap.org

The biopic will be produced by Mark Hulme through his Five Star Institute banner. ‘Jobs’ is not the only Steve Jobs biopic which is currently in the works. Sony Pictures has also been developing an untitled Steve Jobs biopic, which will be based on an authorized biography by Walter Isaacson.

The rival project still hasn’t tapped its lead actor as well as screenwriter and helmer. Kutcher was last seen in Garry Marshall’s star-studded romantic comedy, ‘New Year’s Eve’. Though he is famously known for his stints in comedy films, the Iowa-born actor also earned strong notices for his performances in such dramas as ‘Spread’, ‘The Butterfly Effect’ and ‘Bobby’.

He was also seen shooting near the Jama Masijid in the Walled City. He tweeted this photo of him with the girls of the NGO.

Press Release: Bihar police attempts to disrupt anti-trafficking NGO-Apne Aap’s work in Araria

Bihar police attempts to disrupt anti-Trafficking NGO-Apne Aap’s work in Araria

Police arrests anti-trafficking activist, files station diaries against founder and state head, confines 15-year-old daughter of Apne Aap staff member in police lock up

NHRC ask DGP Bihar to issue report in four weeks, NLSA asks Purnea District Judge to report action

New Delhi, June 20 : The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has directed the DGP Bihar to submit a report within four weeks on the arbitrary arrest and subsequent humiliation by the Araria police of anti-trafficking activist and Apne Aap staff member, Mohammed Kalam on 1st June, 2012.

The arrest of Mohammed Kalam is one of a series of attempts by the police to disrupt the work of Anti-Trafficking NGO, Apne Aap in Araria, Bihar.

  • On 2nd June, the DSP Araria filed a station diary against the Founder of Apne Aap, Ruchira Gupta and State Coordinator, Manish Jha saying that they threatened him.
  • On 11th February, the police picked up 15-year-old Kajal Khatoon, the daughter of Fatima, a staff member of Apne Aap, near midnight on the pretext of “rescuing” her and kept her in the Forbesgunge Thana all night with no food, water, blanket and no female escort. She was not even allowed to meet her mother;
  • In May 2012, the police subjected an Apne Aap employee to search and intimidation in his hotel room;
  • On 2nd June, the SP Araria openly flouted a Supreme Court order and paraded Mohammed Kalam with handcuffs and ropes around his wrists in front of the media.
  • The brother-in-law of Mohammed Kalam was stopped by the police while driving home on his motorcycle and harassed on the pretext of checking his documents.

Since 2009, Apne Aap has managed to get 51 traffickers arrested, rescued 25 girls and enrolled 24 girls from the red-light district in school. It has organized 110 women to close down brothels in the homes they were living in, leading to the Rampur red-light area shrinking from 72 brothels to 15 and Khawaspur from 17 to 1.

Mohammed Kalam is the Chief Investigator of Apne Aap Women Worldwide in Bihar. Last December, he informed us that his investigations revealed that girls are being bought and sold in the Kali Mela, which comes to Forbesgunge every January. On the basis of his investigation, we filed a complaint with the police. Subsequently on 11th February, the local police conducted a raid around midnight but did not invite any Apne Aap employee to accompany the police force for this raid. In fact, no female social worker was taken on the raid. However, in the subsequent FIR, the SP wrote that an Apne Aap employee, Ms Soumya Pratheek accompanied him on the raid. Ms. Pratheek objected to this and wrote a letter to get her name removed from the FIR as she was not there first of all and secondly the raid violated many human rights norms. Twenty-four girls were rescued in the raid. Inexplicably a staff member’s daughter was picked up in the raid, while curiously some of the other rescued girls were either handed back to their exploiters or to a shelter in neighboring District Purnea about a 100 km away, instead of the short-stay home in Araria itself.

Strangely, one of the rescued girls, Sony, kept in the Purnea Shelter filed a complaint before a magistrate under Section 164 Cr PC, three and a half months after her rescue suggesting that she may have been subjected to duress or inducement in the long interim period. Secondly, she named someone called Kalam and three others. No corroborative evidence was collected by the police to verify if this was the same Kalam. It is also a point to note that the police have only arrested Mohammed Kalam while the others accused in the FIR are still at large.

Mohammed Kalam was ironically arrested on a statement made by a girl who was rescued on an Apne Aap complaint based on an investigation that was led by Sri Kalam. It is not possible that a person with 8 years of experience in anti-trafficking will file a complaint against himself.

Mohammed Kalam holds an LLb degree. He is from the OBC Nat community and was educated by his sister who was pushed into prostitution. He is fighting against sex-trafficking in honour of his mother and two sisters. They educated him so that one day he could stand up against this injustice. He was nominated for the US International Visitor’s Programme in 2011 and named The Week Magazine’s Anti-Trafficking Hero in 2004 and was a resource person for the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime anti-trafficking training programme to sensitize Bihar police.

About Apne Aap : Apne Aap Women Worldwide is a grassroots Indian organization working to empower girls and women to resist and end sex trafficking in brothels, red light districts, slums and villages in Bihar, West Bengal, Delhi and Maharashtra.

About Ruchira Gupta : Ruchira Gupta was inspired to found Apne Aap after making her Emmy Award-winning documentary, ‘The Selling of Innocents’.  Ruchira has campaigned tirelessly to promote the leadership of survivors in the global fight to end trafficking – bringing groups of survivors to speak before the UN General Assembly in 2008 and 2009.

For more information please call: 9891628314 or email at
tinku@apneaap.org,manish@apneaap.org

Press Releases: Anti-trafficking activist Kalam, was arrested in Forbesgunge on False Charges

Forbesgunge, Araria, Bihar, 2nd June : Anti-trafficking activist and Apne Aap Women Worldwide staff member, Sri Mohammed Kalam, was arrested in Forbesgunge yesterday without proper investigation on fabricated charges of trafficking. Apne Aap was dismayed and outraged to find that the arrest was made without proper inquiry and that he was not produced in court 24 hours after his arrest. Instead, disturbingly the superintendent of police, Araria, threw Apne Aap staff members out of his office and lower police officials have paraded Md Kalam to the media with ropes tied around his wrist. Apne Aap Women Worldwide Founder President, Ruchira Gupta has written to the Home Minister of India and to the Chief Minister of Bihar and the Chief Justice of India demanding the immediate release of Sri Md Kalam, dropping of all charges against him and action against those police officials who have arbitrarily arrested Sri Md Kalam without proper investigation. “We believe that Md Kalam is being penalized because he is a fiery activist against trafficking and is from a Minority religion and from the OBC, Nat community. His arrest exposes the collusion between the police and traffickers and the urgent need for police reform,” she said.Md Kalam, has been instrumental in putting traffickers in jail, rescuing girls from the brothels of Rampur and Khawaspur in Araria and Katihar. He is a Project Officer with Apne Aap and holds a LLb. Degree. He was named the Activist of the Year by The Week magazine and has been nominated for the US International Visitors Programme. His life story will be released in a Norwegian book, Town of Love, on Monday. He is married to a social worker and has a one-year old daughter.

Apne Aap is urgently calling for police reform so that law enforcement officials prosecute the buyers and sellers of sex, not the women who are victims of the trafficking and the activists working to stop the exploitation.

Apne Aap Women Worldwide is a grassroots Indian organization working to empower girls and women to resist and end sex trafficking. Since 2002, we have formed 150 self-empowerment groups in brothels, red light districts, slums and villages in Bihar, West Bengal, Delhi and Maharashtra. We have found a community- centered solution that transforms the most marginalized girls and women into leaders. Just last fortnight US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, met with Apne Aap’s victims and survivors and joined Apne Aap’s campaign, Cool Men Don’t Buy Sex, by putting on a wrist band gifted by an Apne Aap activist.

Press Releases: Apne Aap Women Worldwide Celebrates National Girl’s Rights Day

Apne Aap Women Worldwide Celebrates National Girl’s Rights Day

Najafgadh, Delhi, 24th January: Apne Aap Women Worldwide Celebrated National Girls Child Day today in their centers in Hasanpur and Dharampura in the Najafgadh district in the outskirts of Delhi. This daylong event was conducted with the young adolescent girls in both the centers to commemorate the importance of girls and their rights across the nation.

The Government declared January 24th as National Girl Child Day in order to recognize the difficulties special to girls, combat discrimination towards females, and empower young girls by teaching them necessary life skills and lessons. Apne Aap hosted a Girls Rights Day so that these vulnerable girls can understand and realize their innate rights and entitlements as a female.

The day’s activities consisted of a Nukkad Natak ( street play) put together by the girls which was centered on the theme of female Feoticide. The girls enacted a female feotus and what it feels to be murdered just because luck has it she was born a girl. The girls also took part in a drawing competition where they took up the theme of malnourishment. They drew pictures of how girls are more malnourished than boys in their societies as there is more importance given to a male child’s health and prosperity. This was followed by a session on the Rights of the Girl child presented by Manohar Rana, State Coordinator, Apne Aap. He gave a small lecture on the Right to Education for the girl child, the Right to Health, Legal Rights, and the Right Against Child Marriage.

After the day of activities was over, one of the girls, Kajal—a 16 year old girl from Dharampura—who participated in the event said, “I love the play on female feoticide because they showed us that even before the girl is born she was killed, demonstrating how our rights are taken away from us even before we are born. I really liked the session on Rights because I got to learn so much about Rights which I am entitled to and not aware of.”

Overall the entire day had a festive feel to it with all the girls very excited and motivated to stand up and celebrate a day that highlights and brings forward their rights. Apne Aap has many more activities lined up for the benefit of girls in all their centers in order to spread knowledge and awareness.

 

 

Press Release: Apne Aap Women Worldwide commits at the Clinton Global Initiative

Expansion of the Apne Aap self help model in the next 5 years to prevent and protect 3,000 women and girls from sex trafficking in India. The Self Help model organizes these women and girls in small community based economic and social cooperatives (Self Help Groups) under the umbrella of Apne Aap’s Anti-Trafficking Units to access legal protection, livelihood options and educational learning.

Each of the women’s co-operative elects its own office bearers who are office bearers trained to constantly evaluate their programs and and articulate their needs.

These SHGs meet and are trained in the Apne Aap Anti-trafficking Units where project coordinators are available for problem solving and advice.

Members of Self Help Groups are trained to:

– Oversee their own income generation activities

– To enroll children into schools and keep track of drop outs

– Monitor gender-based violence and trafficking cases within the community.

Commitment Objective

– Mainstream at least 1,000 children, especially girls into formal schools

– Register 3,000 women and girls into 200 Self Help Groups

– Play a vital role in changing the Indian anti-trafficking law on behalf of victims and survivors of trafficking

 

Background

There are 100 million adolescent girls (10-19yrs) living in poverty in India. The female literacy rate in India is 53.67%  as opposed to the male literacy rate of 75.26%; 36.8% of girls in India are married before reaching the age of 18 yrs.

These inequalities and deeply entrenched gender discrimination render girls extremely vulnerable to domestic servitude, bonded labour, physical, sexual, psycho-social abuse and human trafficking. Girls form the majority of 1.2 million prostituted children in India today (Central Bureau of Investigation, 2009). Whole communities of certain castes are at risk or are victims of trafficking.

Organized criminal networks have formed alliances with profiteers from the sex, tourism, pharmaceutical and pornography industries and are now further entrenched within India. The dominance of organized crime networks in the trafficking industry has been documented in the 2007 Annual Crime Report in India brought out by the Bureau of Police Research.

While the ages of those trafficked is going down, the number of brothel districts and destination sites are going up, according to the Action Research conducted by the national Human Rights Commission of India. Now whole communities of certain castes are at risk or are victims of trafficking. The capacity of shelters cannot match the rise in the trafficking of women and girls in India.

Apne Aap’s work with women and girls has shown that the most vulnerable groups to all kinds of violence and discrimination are teenage girls who, due to lack of education, low socio-economic background of their families, cultural and religious factors, are easy prey to situations leading to domestic servitude, bonded labour, physical, sexual, psycho-social abuse and human trafficking. Most importantly, the lack of safety and support systems in the communities further aggravates their vulnerability.

A community-led victim-centric approach to combat trafficking is more sustainable. Apne Aap has found that this is possible if small group structures of women and girls are facilitated and protected by Apne Aap team members. This enables victims, survivors and women and girls at risk to be able to resist the organized crime networks, to access other livelihood options and advocate for social, criminal and economic policy changes in a more sustainable way.

Therefore, there is a need to empower not only women in the red light districts and slums but also these young girls through livelihood trainings, access to educational services, legal protection to build their capacities to resist violence and all forms of exploitation.

 Commitment Details.

Strengthen the Apne Aap Anti Trafficking Units to prevent and protect 3000 women and girls from sex-trafficking by :

-Registering 200 Self Help Groups of women and girls in slums and brothel districts in India over 5 years

-Enrolling at least 1,000 children, especially daughters of women in prostitution into mainstream schools with help of self-help group members

-Providing non-formal education and bridge courses to 1000 children especially girls till they are prepared for mainstream schools

-Provide recurring trainings to 2000 adult females on enrolling and monitoring children in schools over a 5-year period

– Help 3,000 women and girls open bank accounts and start savings

-Provide 3 day recurring in-depth Self Help Group orientation workshops to 1000 adolescent, and 2000 adult females over 5 years. Workshop topics will include group registration, opening and operating bank accounts, conducting and recording meetings, available Government income generation policies, availing a loan

-Provide recurring in-depth human rights/leadership workshops to 1000 adolescent and 2000 adult females over a 5-year period. Through interactive methodologies, workshop topics link human rights and trafficking issues

– Hold advocacy programs like open mike sessions, rallies and street plays and writing for women’s newspaper (Red Light Despatch) among the 200 self-help groups to be distributed among at least 10,000 people monthly in all anti-trafficking units.

-Teach members of self-help groups to mobilize other women, write petitions, and run signature campaigns to articulate their dreams and needs.

Newness of Commitment

Apne Aap will work to deepen, scale up and replicate its Self Help model (based on its work and experiences in the various red-light areas it currently works at, in particular in the state of Bihar in India)  to reach more women and girls.

It will strengthen its anti-trafficking units to mentor and monitor at least 200 self-help groups so that it can directly impact on the lives of 3,000 more women and girls by getting them into schools and creating dignified livelihood options.

It will also tie up with research and academic bodies to document a theoretical framework of its approach so that it can further develop the premise of “self-help” by rolling out this model; first in other villages, towns and cities of the Indian states that Apne Aap already operates in, then in other parts of India and finally across other countries in South Asia and other developing and under-developed countries where exploitation and trafficking are rampant.

Apne Aap believes strongly that based on its experience and accumulated knowledge and expertise, it is now time to make a leap forward and engage the international community and other grass roots organizations in its community-based and women centric approach to combating sex-trafficking where it combines learning, livelihood and legal protection in small decentralized groups of women protected by the umbrella of the Apne Aap anti-

trafficking unit.

MEASURES OF SUCCESS

Economic Opportunity Target
Number of people who will generate sustainable income through self-employment or new job opportunities 15,000 women and girls
Number of people who will have improved access to capital and financial services 3000
Number of girls/women to be supported through empowerment initiatives 15000
Number of people to obtain access to information technology 4000 people
 
Education Target
Number of children to gain access to education (formal or non-formal school programs) 1500 per year
Number of children to gain access to improved quality of education 824 per year
Number of girls to be reached by interventions targeting female enrollment 1000 per year
Number of children to be reached by school feeding programs 1500 per year
Number of people who will benefit from skills-based professional training programs 3000
Number of people to become actively engaged in efforts to promote education 100
   
Global Health Target
Number of people to have increased access to health services 3500 per year
Number of children who will have benefited from malnutrition interventions 1500 per year