Thu 21-Jun-2018
About Shakti Samuha

In 1995, widespread police raids in the red light districts of major Indian cities freed over 500 women from slavery and abuse in brothels. Among these were 148 Nepalese women and girls. For fear that they would bring back HIV and other diseases in the country the Nepalese government was unwilling to repatriate them to their homes. The women were then locked away in remand homes where they endured extremely harsh living conditions. Given the government’s lack of involvement, several NGOs stepped up to return these women and young girls home and to try and rehabilitate them. However, these rehabilitation centres did not do enough to help restore these women’s self-esteem.

It was months afterwards, when they had started receiving training and the women started understanding their basic rights, that they realised they were not to blame for their trafficking and the things they were forced to endure. It was then that 15 of these women decided to set up Shakti Samuha. Shakti Samuha began in 1996 and is the first NGO to have been set up by survivors of trafficking.

Since, they have been working hard on rescuing, repatriating, rehabilitating and reintegrating girls and women who have been trafficked. They are also working on awareness raising and education programmes with adolescent and at risk groups to prevent trafficking before it occurs. Shakti Samuha works with a large network of women survivors. Many were rescued and reintegrated by Shakti Samuha and become ambassadors within their community to speak out against trafficking, raise awareness within groups who are at risk of trafficking and sometimes share first-hand accounts of their own experiences. They also work on advocacy issues to raise awareness about trafficking victims and issues on a national level. It also supports income generation activities so that survivors have means to support their living in a dignified way.  

Their Vision

Trafficking survivors will be empowered to lead a dignified life in society.

Their Mission
Trafficking survivors and women and children at risk of trafficking will be organized, empowered and aware, which will enable them to contribute to campaigns against human trafficking, protecting women and girls living in vulnerable conditions.

Their Goal
The goal of Shakti Samuha is to establish a progressive society, devoid of trafficking and other kinds of violence against women.

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