On 18 October, the EU International Day against Trafficking, ten European civil society organizations received their Child10 Award at the Royal Castle in Stockholm, Sweden. Amongst these organizations is ASTRA, who, together with the other nine organisations were awarded for their work against human trafficking and other forms of commercial sexual exploitation of girls. The Award was presented by Her Majesty Queen Silvia.
The Global Report on Trafficking in persons from United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) shows that every third victim of human trafficking are children and that 9 out of 10 of the victims of human trafficking for sexual exploitation are girls and women. The selected Awarded Members are all organizations working to eradicate the commercial sexual exploitation of children and to support the victims all around Europe.
– This year’s Awarded Member Organizations are all dedicated organizations in the fight against trafficking and sexual exploitation of children in Europe. They all have impressive track records and are making a substantial impact on the ground. We are extremely proud to have them as a part of our network, says Jacob Flärdh, Secretary General Child10.
The ten organizations selected as Child10 Awarded Members for 2021 have, during the past year, been working together to identify common challenges and best practices as well as jointly advocating for effective and durable solutions. They have also received a grant of 10.000 Euros from Her Majesty Queen Silvia´s Foundation as well as an individual support program to scale the impact of their organizations in support of our program partner Applied Value.
Astra has been a driving force in protecting victims of human trafficking in Serbia for two decades and has remained true to its cause despite a very challenging context. They are today one of the strongest, loudest and most credible voices against human trafficking and sexual exploitation in Serbia and the region. Astra’s strong commitment to be at the forefront, supporting victims and applying a holistic rights-based approach to human trafficking is impressive − it was said at the award ceremony.
One of the highlights during the seminar was a high-level panel discussion where particiapnts included Charlotte Petri Gornitzka, the Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations and Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF, Ilias Chatzis, the Chief of UNODC’s Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section, Diane Schmitt, the EU Anti-trafficking Coordinator and Erik Wottrich, the Head of Sustainability at Tele2.
– Organizations and governments all around Europe are testifying on the increase of human trafficking and other forms of commersial sexual exploitation during the pandemic. These kinds of meetings and discussions we have had today, aiming to increase the collaboration between actors in various countries are extremely important to stop this exploitation, says Jacob Flärdh.