Cambodian Women's Development Agency's Safe Shelter provides safe and caring accommodation for up to 20 young women and girls aged 8 - 20. These girls have been victims of trafficking, rape and gender-based violence, or have been identified as being at high risk of this in their home environment. We provide them with food, counselling and a safe place which allows them to rehabilitate so they can focus on their education and their futures.
Gender inequality is still rife in Cambodia. The country ranks 96th out of 148 in the 2013 Human Development Report's Gender Inequality Index. Girls often do not finish their formal education, being forced to drop out or miss school days to care for siblings or work to provide income for the family. Domestic violence is culturally acceptable and trafficking in people for labor and sexual exploitation has increased due to poverty, lack of employment opportunities and education
CWDA conducts education in communities about the problems of trafficking. It is essential that there is a place to refer victims and those at risk of trafficking and abuse. The Safe Shelter provides girls and women with a safe, happy and caring place to live. They receive food, access to formal education, vocational training, leisure activities, nursing care, counselling and support when they leave the shelter. Our aim to ensure that the girls can look towards a happy and successful future.
We ensure that up to 20 girls per year go to school which means that they will be more likely to find employment and less vulnerable to exploitation. This enables them to break out of the cycle of poverty. The girls have education about child rights and activities to increase their self-esteem, creating young women with ambition and confidence. We work with girls and families to ensure that they can be reintegrated safely and successfully into their communities or have the skills to cope alone.