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South AsiaBangladesh

Combating human trafficking and promoting safe migration

Every day thousands of people leave Bangladesh to work in other countries. Migration flows- including within the country - are a breeding ground for human trafficking. Many migrant women are sold and exploited as cheap labour. In cooperation with our partner organization Rights Jessore, we promote safe migration and take action against human trafficking.

Together with our partner organisations, we promote safe migration and combat human trafficking. (Picture: AWO International)
Together with our partner organisations, we promote safe migration and combat human trafficking. (Picture: AWO International)

Bangladesh is one of the countries that is particularly affected by labour migration: According to official figures, 5 million people work abroad, while unofficial estimates expect up to 12 million. The reasons for the migration are diverse, examples are the extreme weather events and consequences of climate change: Every year Bangladesh is hit by severe floods - devastating for a country that is dependent on agriculture. The consequences are a lack of crop yields and income. Thousands of people die in the floods, often these are the male family members who have been responsible for the main income of their families.

Due to the precarious living situation many people in Bangladesh decide to leave their homeland in the hope of a better life. Many see migration as a possibility to provide their families with a minimum level of education or health care. Most do to consider the risks and dangers and many migrants lack the knowledge about their rights. They hardly speak the language of the receiving countries and are therefore dependent on middlemen who too often pursue their own interests. Migrants are treated like goods - without a voice and without rights.


Raising awareness and knowledge about migration and human trafficking

In cooperation with our partner organization Rights Jessore we stand up for the rights of migrants. Our goal is to promote safe migration and take preventive action against human trafficking. Early educational measures are urgently needed to sensitize potential migrant workers for their rights and to inform them about the dangers of human trafficking. All too often, people still fall for human traffickers.

Returned migrants also face many difficulties: many have hardly been able to build up financial reserves, family structures have often broken down after years of absence, and often they have no future prospects on their return. Therefore, the social and economic reintegration of returning migrants is another focus of our work. Another target group of the project is children and young people, because it is important that even the youngest are able to see through the tricks of human traffickers, middlemen and recruitment agencies and are informed about the topic of migration. In addition, teachers and religious educators are trained as multipliers.

Awareness-raising campaigns on labour migration aim to inform the population about the entire process of migration. Only with sufficient knowledge about their own rights and the migration cycle can conscious decisions for or against migration be made. Training sessions with potential migrants, flyers, posters, a newly established service hotline for those affected and information boards in the project regions serve to raise awareness and promote independent decision-making.


Project Combating human trafficking and promoting safe migration
Place/Region Districts Satkhira, Jessore und Jhenaidah
Partner Rights Jessore
Target group Potential and returning migrants
  • Comprehensive educational measures for safe migration
  • Prevention of human trafficking
  • Rescue, repatriation and strengthening of unsuccessful migrants
  • Reintegration of returned migrants through income-generating measures Development of a local monitoring system against human trafficking
Duration 2017-2019
Budget 80.200 Euro p.a.
Sponsor BMZ

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The working conditions of many migrants are often precarious. Here: Migrant workers at a protest action. (Photo: WORBE)
South AsiaBangladesh

Safe migration in Bangladesh

Hundreds of thousands of people from Bangladesh leave their home country every year to work abroad. The conditions under which many migrants have to work and live are usually catastrophic. In order to improve their situation, AWO International, together with the local partner organization WARBE, is implementing a project for safe migration in Bangladesh.

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