• Today in India

    a Dalit is "up to 27 times more likely to be trafficked than anyone else"
  • 1

Dalit Freedom Network

We want to prevent
the human trafficking and modern slavery of Dalits
and others from poor and marginalised communities
in India.

With your help, we can.

The Challenge

Modern slavery is a global issue; it affects every country.

In India, where human trafficking is mainly internal, most of those who are trafficked or in bonded labour are from Dalit* (Untouchable), Adivasi (tribal) or other poor and marginalised communities.

Our Response

Responding to requests from Dalit leaders, Dalit Freedom Network is working to give opportunities, hope and dignity to women and children in these communities.

We do this through a range of trafficking prevention programmes run by our Indian colleagues.

Your Vital Role

Join with people of goodwill from all walks of life here in the UK to help raise awareness, call for change, and to support on-the-ground projects.

You can help us make a real difference in the lives of individuals and whole communities...

icon free a child

...through education

icon free a woman

...through trafficking prevention
and economic empowerment

icon free a community

...through building a
movement for change

Dalit Freedom Network UK supports the following programmes run and staffed by our Indian colleagues…

Preventing Ritual Sex Slavery

Jogini Preventions and Awareness Programme

Empowering Joginis and former Joginis in Telangana to be community leaders delivering awareness programmes, stopping illegal Jogini dedications, connecting individuals with government health, economic and education programmes, and supporting vulnerable women in the community. The numbers of dedication ceremonies has fallen drastically since the programme began. Legal action to challenge poor enforcement of the law is also ongoing.

Jogini Economic Empowerment Programme

Providing grants to enable Joginis and former Joginis in Telangana to set up microbusinesses in the community. These include various roadside stalls, chili powder production, goat-rearing and many other initiatives providing a livelihood and helping to restore dignity. Women are also able to save and to recycle some of their income to enable others to set up businesses. Tailoring training and sewing machines are also provided to enable young women to set up clothing repair services in their villages.

Jogini Community Healthcare Initiative

Developing primary healthcare in five Telangana villages initially through locally appointed community healthcare workers, specifically to reach those who are untouched by existing healthcare provision. This includes Joginis and others from Dalit, Tribal and low-caste communities. As well as health education, health workers target preventable and minor health problems. In addition a particular emphasis is placed on preventing HIV, AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections, which are prevalent among the Jogini population.

Pratigya Children's Shelter

Providing care and support for girls from Telangana who are most vulnerable to being forced into ritual sex slavery. Most are daughters or grand-daughters of Joginis. They are only given places in the shelter with the full agreement of their mother. Through the shelter, girls are able to receive basic healthcare, emotional support, counselling, quality education in one of our schools, a nutritious diet and to experience a loving caring environment.

Jogini programmes in the planning stage:

  • Primary Healthcare Centre
  • Short-term Women's Shelter
  • Home for Elderly Joginis
  • Economic Development Centres
  • School

Devadasi AIDS Centre

Our AIDS centre in Karnataka aims to reduce the incidence of HIV and sexually transmitted infections among the Devadasi population by providing testing, diagnosis, treatment and counselling. Peer educators are recruited from Devadasi communities to support the work of doctors and technicians. Economic empowerment programmes are also being run.

Preventing Human Trafficking

Tarika Shelter and Skills Centre

Tarika provides a multi-dimensional approach to prevention and rehabilitation in relation to sex trafficking and other forms of exploitation and abuse experienced by women from Dalit, Tribal and other poor and marginalised communities. Based in Karnataka, the centre not only provides residential care for a small group of vulnerable girls, but also vocational and skills training for up to a hundred women from nearby slum areas, helping to build confidence and restore dignity.

Community Development Programme

Working in slum areas in the state of Telangana, this programme is a holistic approach to trafficking prevention among communities that are most vulnerable to such exploitation. Staff visit the slums on a regular basis building trust and developing relationships. Through these visits families and individuals are able to freely access nutritious food, basic healthcare, emotional support, vocational training opportunities and advice on government benefits and schemes.