On the implementation of the Awareness Raising Campaign on Human Trafficking in Sarajevo Canton and Zenica Doboj Canton in the period February 1 – October 18, 2018
The Association “Novi put” signed a Project Agreement with the Swiss Caritas on 1 February 2018 for the implementation of the Awareness Raising Campaign on Human Trafficking in Sarajevo Canton (SC) and Zenica Doboj Canton (ZDC).
Implementation of an awareness campaign on human trafficking among students at following 14 elementary and 2 secondary schools in Canton Sarajevo and Zenica-Doboj Canton:
- Elementary School (E.S.) “Hasan Kikić”, Centar, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Porodica ef. Ramić”, Vogošća, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Hašim Spahić”, Ilijaš, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Stari Ilijaš”, Ilijaš, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Grbavica II”, Novo Sarajevo, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Osman Nakaš”, Novi Grad, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Avdo Smailović”, Novi Grad, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Treća osnovna škola”, Ilidža, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Deseta osnovna škola”, Ilidža, Sarajevo
- E.S. “9.maj”Pazarić, Hadžići, Sarajevo
- Secondary School for Environment and Wood Design, Sarajevo
- E.S. “Hamdija Kreševljaković”, Kakanj
- E.S. “Hasan Kikić”, Zenica
- E.S. “Miroslav Krleža”, Zenica
- E.S. “Prva osnovna škola”, Zavidovići
- Mixed Secondary School Zenica
Due to increased interest of school staff and students during the reporting period “Novi put” implemented 35 lectures instead of 32 planned ones for a total of 1131 students of elementary and secondary schools in two Cantons. Each lecture was also attended by the school representatives, i.e. their respective teachers, school councillors and social workers. During the lectures “Novi put” prevention and education staff provided students with information about the current situation re. human trafficking in B&H, forms of exploitation with a special focus on recruitment of victims for the purpose of sexual, labour exploitation, forced begging, child marriages and production of pornographic materials, methods of recruitment used by human traffickers; characteristics of human trafficking (e.g. blackmailing by using explicit photos and videos, making threats to family members, physical punishment, forced use of drugs, staying with a tourist visa and illegal work during such a stay, lower salary than previously agreed, suspension of payment, long working hours, restriction of freedom of movement, absence of adequate medical care and assistance after possible accidents at work, involvement of private employment agencies, seizure of travel documents, illegal stay abroad, indebtedness as a method of control, use of interest increasing debt, punishment for violation of rules, punishment for behaviour after working hours, billing unrealistically increased costs for accommodation, food, transportation); how to detect a situation of human trafficking;
The students were informed about treatment of victims of human trafficking using real cases of HT “Novi put” has worked at, how they could detect and protect themselves from and how to react in a situation of human trafficking. Information about the Help line and the Counselling Centre run by “Novi put” were shared with all students aimed to empower them to ask for assistance in case of being exposed to HT. The videos featuring most prevailing forms of exploitation in BiH were played. During each lecture the students were encouraged to share any experiences with human trafficking they or someone they know had been exposed to and as a result discussions were held with students during all lectures.
The anti-trafficking materials (leaflets, pens, posters) with the logo of CaCh were distributed at the schools aimed at reaching to as many potential beneficiaries as possible.
It was interesting to note that all the elementary and secondary students who were asked to give a definition of HT stated it was kidnapping and sale of human organs, whereas they were not familiar with other forms of human trafficking present in BiH.
However, the projections of „Novi put“ have been justified and the issue of online child abuse seems to be a growing problem. During the implementation of lectures Novi put staff learned about numerous cases of attempted/successful cases of recruitment of children through internet for production of pornographic materials. Many children stated they were contacted by online friends whom they mostly did not know in the real life and they were either sent explicit photos or they were asked to take nude photos and send it to the „online friend“. It is also worrying that children as young as 13-14 already have more than 600 online friends who follow them, have access to all their photos and posts they publish and in most of the cases they maintain private communication with them without being sure about the real identity of their online friends.
After each lecture „Novi put“ discussed the feedback from students with the relevant school staff aimed at prevention and possible future abuse and providing assistance to identified victims.