2020 ended with increase in our community reach in providing help and assistance to young women victims or those at risk of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. SENSAVANG began developing a legal awareness campaign to targeting communities and schools in Savannakhet province on illegal migration and, against of human trafficking and domestic violence.

Legal awareness program is designed to inform communities and schools in the target area about human trafficking and violence.  It is surprising that many villages are unaware of what Lao law says about violence many accept it is ok to strike a person or verbally abuse them. It is similar for human trafficking many believe this is normal.  Due to poor literacy levels in the village the program will use a series of posters with pictures to help tell the story.  During the reporting period Sengsavang conducted legal awareness to 161 villagers of 4 villages of 3 districts (Thapanthong, Outhoumphone and Xaybuly) as well as 9 schools (7 primary schools and 2 secondary schools  1.238 students participated)

Continuing our support of girls in communities, we increased the number to 39 beneficiaries – 6 in primary school, 23 girls attending high-school, and 10 young people (8 women, 2 men) are in higher education – 2 studying office management, 1 agriculture, 2 kindergarten education, 1 English, and 1 Chemistry teacher, 1 is at art college and the 2 men are at technical college.

In 2020, a total of 45 girls found support in the organisation. The centre took on 15 new arrivals, who were vulnerable and at risk of exploitation of remote villages. Of the 33 existing residences,  11 are long-term residents completing their high school studies, 12 were completing sewing training, 5 apprenticeship, 4 beauty training and 1 weaving training.

12 residents were successfully reintegrated in the community, of which 8 completed sewing training and decided to run their own business within their communities, 2 continued their higher education, one at Pedagogy training College and one realistic drawing at Savannakhet Fine Arts School.  2 returned home to help their families.

In July 2021 we conducted “REFRESH” Small Business & Marketing Training for Sengsavang beneficiaries who are soon to or have re-integrated into their village communities. There were 30 trainees, 22 tailors and 8 beauticians, coming from 9 districts in Savannakhet province. Training consisted of marketing and finance.

Trainee feedback – “It is good opportunity to have attend the workshop so we have learnt and get knowledge of marketing, advertisement online, service, introducing products, photography and promotion.”

“We have leant to know what is a network, simple cashbook management, monthly income and expenses (personal and business cost) planning from small for bigger business in the future, know how to attract customers while in the same area there are many same businesses.”

“Knowledge and experience from this workshop some we have known and many we haven’t known but this is what to improve our self and our products for the better way in the future.”

We hope to bring back more beneficiaries for this type of training, to update their skills, grow their network and strengthen their existing businesses.

All of this successful work wouldn’t be possible without funding from our generous donors. We are looking forward to support at least as many vulnerable girls and women in 2021-2, if not more.