Every year, hundreds of thousands of people leave their home in order to secure their survival and that of their families as migrant workers. Poverty, lack of prospects and violence are the main reasons why people set off on their journey. For many, the hope for a better life turns into a nightmare: They get into debt in order to be able to pay the placement fees and are exposed to many dangers on the way. When they arrive in the destination country, they receive low wages or no wages at all. They are exploited or even sold. Women in particular are threatened by sexual violence. The border between migration and human trafficking is often blurred. Together with our partner organisations, we work for safe migration and take action against human trafficking and exploitative and inhumane living and working conditions.
Sautini Sardar comes from a poor family from Dulari in eastern Nepal. As a single parent she has a particularly hard time in Nepal. When her son was one and a half years old, she decided to work abroad so that she could later pay for his school education. She takes out an expensive loan from a private money lender and pays a tugboat to take her to the Indian city of Delhi. The tugboats put her on a plane to Kuwait, where she has to work under exploitative conditions as a domestic helper. Her employer does not pay her, she is not allowed to leave the country. Her dream of a better life turns into a nightmare.
With the help of our partner organisation Pourakhi, Sautini Sardar was rescued after many years of forced labour and saw her son again, who was now seven years old. Today she works in a factory. She suffers from health problems. With Pourakhi's support she can pay for her treatment and also finance her son's school education so that he can break the cycle of poverty and one day take care of himself and his mother.
The whistling of the freight train "La Bestía", with which many migrant women set off on the dangerous journey from Mexico's southern border to the USA, can be heard in the "La Sagrada Familia" hostel (in English: the Holy Family) in the municipality of Apizaco. The tracks go right past the hostel. This is where migrants find protection and safe accommodation.
The hostel was opened in 2010 and has been open 365 days a year, 24 hours a day ever since. Since then, more than 30,000 migrants have been provided with a place to sleep in safe accommodation, hot meals and medical (physical and psychological) care during their 48-hour stay. In addition, they can make free telephone calls here to give their relatives a sign of life in their home country and receive information about safer migration routes and their rights as migrants in educational courses. With the support of AWO International, construction measures are being implemented to make the hostel safer. In this context, the two dormitories and the kitchen of the accommodation will be completely renovated and expanded. The project is designed to be earthquake-proof, as Mexico is regularly hit by severe earthquakes - most recently in September 2017.
Tel. 0049 (0)30 / 25292-364