With more than 40 million victims of modern slavery around the world* we are committed to calling the nations to speak up until all are free. Eden has been working with trafficked girls and women in Asia for over 15 years. In those 15 years, programs have been implemented in five major cities and over 500 women have been rescued. Eden has a thorough and innovative victim support program that is holistic in its approach, and highly effective in the restoration of victims.
Eden began with two housewives, with one evening a week to spare, wanting to address the injustice of human trafficking in their city. After doing research, scoping out red light areas and praying they slowly began to form relationships with those involved in the commercial sex industry. Motivated by our Christian faith, the vision was to reach everyone involved in the red light community and to see women set free and areas transformed. We have established multiple safe shelters, developed an international jewelry social enterprise and witnessed thousands of people involved in commercial sexual exploitation be impacted.
Eden provides safe shelter, trauma informed care, vocational training and employment to empower each woman that comes through our doors to find their worth, dignity and renewed hope for the future.
The Eden ‘Theory of Change’ is based on a reach, rescue and restore model.
Every woman that has left the red light districts and come to Eden is a survivor of trafficking where they were coerced, forced or deceived into sex work or marriage. They were exploited because someone took advantage of the fact that they were vulnerable. In the red light districts, the women lived a life under the close watch and control of their pimps and bosses. They were intimidated and threatened into compliance. They were often confined and even at times chained. They became human commodities traded on the streets, entertainment establishments, or increasingly, on the internet. Most importantly, they lived in shame and hopelessness – believing that hope and freedom were out of their reach.
In recent years, Eden has been seeing a rising number of women who have been trafficked across borders for forced marriage. There are now over 15 million victims of forced marriage*. Young girls and women are married to men that they have never met before and often in socio-economic circumstances equal to, or worse than, the rural villages of the home country which they had travelled from. Many of these arranged marriages were premised on lies, deception and false promises. The marriages were often characterized by violence, abuse and sometimes rape from the husband and the husband’s family members. The long journey for women to return to their home country or to a safe environment is fraught with challenges because often they lack legal identification, and there are language barriers, racial discrimination and a lack of support of friends and family.
All profits from the social enterprise directly benefit each woman that comes to Eden (salary, services, shelter and other programs), so that more of the women that leave the red light districts can be provided with the opportunity to gain training and employment.
*International Labour Organization, 2017