WASHINGTON, DC — Plan International USA has been awarded a $2 million project in Burkina Faso to strengthen assistance for children who are survivors of human trafficking as well as build government and community capacity to prevent trafficking in the future. The grant is funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking Persons.
- Providing support to child survivors of trafficking to reintegrate into society.
- Strengthening the capacity of the government, community leaders and civil society to prevent trafficking from occurring and support reintegration of survivors.
- Building awareness of child trafficking through social campaigns in cooperation with local child protection networks.
“Children, especially girls, are vulnerable to sexual exploitation, forced labor and recruitment by armed groups due to underfunded education systems, poverty and a lack of employment opportunities in Burkina Faso,” said Dr. Tessie San Martin, President and CEO of Plan International USA. “This project will provide critical support to the government, communities and families as they work to prevent and support survivors of child trafficking.”
The project will target girls and boys ages 10-18 in Cascades, Boucle de Mouhoun and North regions of Burkina Faso as these areas experience a high rate of child trafficking, including the emerging trends of trafficking by violent extremist groups. The protective environment for children will be strengthened through support for the government-run hotline to report cases, developing a directory of services, and providing case management support and legal services to survivors.
“In developing this project, Plan worked with all the different levels of support that surround a child — from their own individual capacities, to the communities they live in, and the regional and national government systems that protect their rights,” said Michelle Van Akin, a Disaster Risk Manager specializing in protection at Plan International USA. “In order to effectively prevent and respond to child trafficking, we need to strengthen each of those protective layers concurrently.”
Plan will partner with Keoogo, a local organization, to provide services to child survivors and assist with reintegration in society. The project will be implemented from May 2021 through April 2024.
Plan International experts are available for media interviews.
About Plan International USA
Powered by supporters, Plan International USA partners with adolescent girls, young women and children around the world to overcome oppression and gender inequality, providing the support and resources that are unique to their needs and the needs of their communities, ensuring they achieve their full potential with dignity, opportunity and safety. Founded in 1937, Plan is an independent development and humanitarian organization that is active in more than 80 countries.