Thailand is a source, transit, and destination country for human trafficking, including sex trafficking and forced/child marriage. Our projects in Thailand are located in Chiang Rai which borders Myanmar, from which much trafficking occurs. The deep-rooted Thai prostitution industry provides an outlet to which victims are transported and enslaved. Many people are also trafficked into the commercial fishing industry. Migration to and from Thailand is largely identified as a medium through which trafficking takes place.
Prevention clubs are organized by local citizens in their communities with the aim of reducing the prevalence of child exploitation and systematic abuse. They are driven by the idea that the best measures of protection and defense against exploitation are locally driven efforts beginning in homes, villages, schools, and communities by those most affected.
There are currently three clubs in Thailand. One is a mixed youth club in Huai Pla Kung village, which is located near central Chiang Rai. There are two girls’ clubs, one in Huaisan village, and one located outside of central Chiang Rai hosted by the Watanasere Foundation. Clubs in Chiang Rai are working in a school to raise awareness about implementing a child protection policy, the impact of child abuse, positive discipline, and preventing violence against children. The club has met with school leaders and board members and aims to improve the knowledge and awareness about child abuse amongst school and community leaders.
This project will host a training for community-based club leaders. The training will teach leaders how to identify at-risk areas and individuals in their communities, using the girls’ empowerment club curriculum, and making community groups sustainable and effective. It will also train leaders on how to conduct a risk assessment for individual, environmental, and social factors that increase vulnerability to exploitation, the role of clubs in mitigating risk factors, and how clubs can combat trafficking by identifying and referring victims.