Each year thousands of young women are trafficked across borders and within their own countries. Risk factors include poverty, lack of access to financial services and the responsibility to contribute to family and household welfare. Many young women dream of building better lives and futures for themselves and their families. Through force, fraud, and coercion, traffickers exploit these women's economic vulnerabilities and ambitions in order to enslave, torture, and exploit.
HERA's interventions prevent trafficking and re-trafficking by economically empowering women. HERA provides grants to start and scale up women-owned enterprises in Eastern Europe and the Caucasus. Grantees include previously trafficked women and those with innovative ideas to prevent trafficking. In the UK and USA, HERA provides entrepreneurship training, professional mentoring, and business seminars with leading business schools and local NGO partners.
To date HERA has awarded 208 grants to women's ventures in Central and Eastern Europe generating or sustaining over 500 jobs for women at risk of trafficking. HERA has trained 517 young women survivors and those at risk of trafficking on entrepreneurship and provided those in the UK, France, and Seattle with trained mentors. In the UK, 85% of those trained, obtained asylum and/or employment, apprenticeships, academic or professional training, and/or they started new ventures.
This project has provided additional documentation in a DOCX file (projdoc.docx).
Testimonials from HERA beneficiaries & volunteers