90% of women in Kamathipura's brothels are trafficking victims. Their children grow up in the red light area, surrounded by pornography, disease, narcotics, gambling, poor sanitation, and sexual abuse. Because many girls lack a safe place to study -- or even to sleep -- they face high risk of second-generation prostitution. When new AAWC girls are asked what they want to be when they grow up, it is not uncommon to hear, "I want to be a brothel madam" -- the most powerful woman in their world.
Every Monday-Friday, the girls are provided academic tutoring and nutritional meals and supplements. On Saturdays, they attend various empowerment workshops (e.g., personal finance, general and menstrual health, human rights, English, computers), recreational workshops (e.g., drawing, dance, yoga), or field excursions (e.g., museums, theaters, on-site career tours, amusement parks). Girls at highest risk of prostitution live in the AAWC night shelter or are referred to a partner boarding home.
In the past 16 years, none of the girls who have graduated from AAWC's program have entered prostitution. This project will support our goal of 100 members to achieve similar success through higher education and/or a stable profession (e.g., accounting, hospitality management, luxury cuisine, retail, social work, teaching). Upon reintegration into mainstream society, these young women will also be able to secure the economic stability necessary to take their mothers out of prostitution as well.
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