Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship

by HERA (Her Economic Rights and Autonomy) France Association
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship
Prevent Trafficking in Women thru Entrepreneurship

Project Report | Nov 19, 2018
HERA 2018 Update

By Lynellyn D. Long, Ph.D. | Founder

Rabbit Farmer in Moldova
Rabbit Farmer in Moldova

As we head into the end of 2018, the HERA teams would like to provide a few updates of our activities and accomplishments this past year that you have generously supported.  

With your support, we were able to:

  • award 43 grants to women entrepreneurs in Armenia, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine (including to refugee and displaced women in Ukraine) to prevent trafficking and re-trafficking;
  • organize four entrepreneurship seminars and networking sessions in Armenia and Ukraine and train 38 women;
  • hold our annual London summer training for 21 trafficked women survivors at Imperial College's new Innovation Centre; 
  • train 25 business mentors to advise the 2018-19 HERA cohort of women survivors in the UK;
  • organize monthly seminars at Imperial College, Salesforce Tower, and Weil law firm, for all trafficked women survivors, who have attended past and present HERA programs.

Your support this year alone has helped to:

  • create at least 40 new jobs this year for young women at risk of dangerous migration in regions of high rates of trafficking in Armenia, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine;
  • sustain at least 140 women-owned ventures in those same regions;
  • develop or expand innovative women-owned businesses in marketing, printing services, wine making, and dairy production, as well as social enterprises that employ and train women in remote rural and border communities; 
  • support 21 young women survivors in the UK to attain a greater sense of self-worth and esteem and to develop new plans for the future to avoid being re-trafficked;
  • allow these young women to demonstrate their resilience and willingness to make useful contributions to the UK economy and society;
  • assist UK women survivors in obtaining leave-to-remain, employment, apprenticeships and/or internships; in continuing schooling or training, and three women from this year’s cohort, in launching their own ventures;
  • bring the total in the UK and coming from 26 countries that HERA has trained to date in entrepreneurship, business, and leadership skills to 326 women survivors of trafficking and other forms of violence;
  • develop new business networks of women entrepreneurs in Central and Eastern Europe, including women farmers, and new social  and professional networks for women trafficking survivors and their business mentors in the UK.

Here are three examples of how your support has made a difference:

  • Gayane, the owner of "BeeArt" in Northern Armenia, received two HERA grants to purchase: (1) a machine to make honeycomb paper; and (2) packaging equipment. Since receiving HERA’s support, Gayane has mentored five other women entrepreneurs in her town in a region that has suffered some of the highest rates of migration and trafficking of young people from Armenia. From her mother's honey production, Gayane creates beeswax candles, honeycomb, cosmetics, and other products which she sells in Yerevan’s Central Market and in Western Europe through Homeland Development Initiative Foundation, one of HERA's partners.  Depending on the demand, Gayane employs five to ten young women working in their homes to make the products.  This past year, on her own initiative, she extended her sales outlets to Georgia.  Gayane has spoken about her venture at two HERA seminars and organized a training session for the women in her village to apply for HERA grants.
  • Natalia, one of the HERA UK 2017 students, came to a recent monthly seminar and told the HERA team that not only was she accepted for an undergraduate degree in psychology at Birkbeck University, but she also won a full scholarship. From hundreds of applicants, Natalia was one of 23 students chosen! She started her course in early October and reported that she is loving it. 
  • Oxana from Kiev started a marketing firm four years ago, only a few months after she had fled the conflict in Donetsk near the Russian border. She had been a successful entrepreneur in Donetsk where she co-owned a marketing firm. When Oxana arrived in Kiev she decided to re-start her own, sole proprietor business. Beginning all over again was initially very difficult. Kiev banks would not give her a loan, because all her tangible assets were in a war zone. After some negotiation, Oxana managed to obtain a small loan at a very high percentage rate. With support from friends and relatives, she then had just enough capital to rent a room and start again on her own. Her high energy, entrepreneurial spirit and excellent social networking skills helped her quickly find clients. Over the last four years she has earned enough to pay off her debts and employ two other young refugee women from Donetsk. With the HERA grant, she purchased a high quality computer screen and plans to employ and train another young refugee woman.

Why HERA?  

  • See the link to Bryerly Long’s film. This vertical film was developed with HERA women.  Three actresses portray their stories and Lynellyn D. Long, HERA Founder, and Elise Do, HERA UK Chair of Trustees, tell about why they volunteer for HERA.

We wish everyone a lovely Holiday Season ahead.  Please consider contributing to HERA on “Giving Tuesday” - November 27 – when your donation may be matched. Or, if you give to HERA any time before the end of this year, you can help us towards reaching our funding goal of $100,000.  The current campaign, launched in 2012, is making a difference in allowing all of us to support women’s economic empowerment and to prevent trafficking and re-trafficking.  We could not have done it without all the support of many generous individuals.  

Thank you!

Cafe in Armenia
Cafe in Armenia
Dried Fruit Producer in Armenia
Dried Fruit Producer in Armenia

Links:

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Aug 20, 2018
Preventing Re-Trafficking and Dangerous Migration

By Lynellyn D. Long, Ph.D. | HERA France Association

May 21, 2018
Organizing Our Own New Ventures

By Lynellyn D. Long, Ph.D. | HERA Founder

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Project Leader:
Lynellyn Long
Sancerre , France
$269,858 raised of $500,000 goal
 
1,748 donations
$230,142 to go
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