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Annual Report 2014

1. Introduction

Also in 2014, we were happy to be able to not only continue the current projects in Nepal but even to expand them. Already previously, pro filia had offered wide-ranging assistance: from preventive measures such as information campaigns and the development of village networks of help through emergency care at the Indian border and in the shelter home down to rehabilitative measures at the rehabilitation home and start-up funding of jobs. In 2014, the rehabilitation home in Itahari could be fully financed by extensive support rendered by Zonta München Friedensengel. And the IT project initiated in 2013 which we are very committed to, could be continued also in 2014. It gives young women a chance to learn a very well accepted profession which secures their livelihood and also leads to a better self-confidence. Until now, IT work has been perceived primarily as a male preserve. In order to also make available workplaces to the young women trained on the PC where they can make a living independently, pro filia started to take over start-up funding for 20 typing offices in 2014. The first five offices have been installed in 2014 already. For further details, please refer to "pro filia Projects".

Dorffrauen informieren sich über die PC-Möglichkeiten im neuen öffentlichen Schreibbüro

Village women getting informed about IT options
in the new public typing office

The year 2014 all in all was characterized by quite a number of actions. Not only did we collect money like we did before for our Nepal projects and provided help in individual cases – for the first time ever, we also started a political campaign. Being shocked by increasing information on the situation of female baby girls, girls and women in India progressively reaching the public, we drafted a petition against femicide in India, the mass murder of the feminine gender. Members of the organization and supporters of our work collected signatures by way of protest at many locations with the objective

  • to make the public even more aware of the femicide subject
  • to appeal to the Indian government to protect its female population by laws, to pursue offences more strictly and to punish the offenders
  • to request the German government to implement the UN Global Principles for Economy and Human Rights also in Germany.
Also a political campaign for the protection of vulnerable girls and women corresponds to the pro filia Articles and is closely related to our Nepalese projects. By the mass femicide which is particularly prevalent in India but which exists also in many other countries like, e.g., Nepal, the gender balance has changed drastically at the expense of the female population. Currently, India has 20% more men than women and the consequences are an even stronger increase in rapes and enslavings, e.g., of Nepalese girls in Indian brothels. For detailed information on the signature collection campaign, please refer to the „Campaign in 2014“ in the Annual Report.

Now, pro filia has existed for 6 years and has 160 members. Contributions, donations received due to different campaigns and the active assistance of supporters make possible our sustained dedication for the massively disadvantaged girls in Nepal.

 

2. Problem Situation

In many areas of Nepal, girls have not had any value at all for hundreds of years. They cost money, when getting married, mostly at an early age and by force, a dowry is expected and daughters then work in the husband´s household and feed his parents rather than the own ones. Frequently, they become victims of domestic violence and rapes.

And Nepalese girls get enslaved on a huge scale: annually, nearly 12 000 girls are sold to Indian brothels and exploited sexually. Often, they are only between 12 and 16 years old. The majority of them will not survive this period – the girls die from the consequences of violence and deseases like Aids, Hepatitis etc.! Because of their fair skin, Nepalese girls and women are said to be particularly beautiful in India. In addition, there is an increasing dearth of women in India. Girls are often aborted there or killed right after their birth.

Some girls are freed from brothels – for example, by a support network established in India by our Nepalese partner organization MAITI! These girls are supported by pro filia   - as the parents frequently reject them. And pro filia also contributes to preventing the sale of girls completely! By the projects financed by pro filia in Nepal, many girls and young women are given a chance for a self-defined and humane life.

 

3.Activities in Nepal

3.1. Cooperation with MAITI Nepal

Also the year 2014, the fifth year of cooperation, was characterized by a constructive collaboration with MAITI. In 2014, the main focus was on the further development of assistance in the field of IT education projects and the installation of the first five typing offices.

3.2 pro filia projects in Nepal

Project 1: Information campaigns and establishment of support networks

The objectives of these projects are
  • to inform the public about the dangers of trafficking and slavery inherent in seemingly attractive job offers and promises of marriage for girls.
  • to improve reintegration of surviving girls who often experience outright rejection on return.
  • to build up a support network for girls.
Results 2014 in the catchment areas of Pashupatinagar, Bhairahawa and Itahari:

  • 300 personal door-to-door discussions in order to convince parents by intensive contacts of the dangers for their daughters to become victims of girl traffickers
  • Information of approx. 700 villagers on the subject of girl trafficking and ways of protection. Particularly successful here are street theatre performances, dance, songs and distribution of information material on the subject. The events are held frequently on market days in the villages visited.
  • Training of a total of 161 police officers
  • Education events for teachers and 238 students
  • Training of 42 members of the support networks established to date as regards the dangers of girls trafficking and safe emigration before beginning employment abroad
  • 5-days of further education for 14 women who carry out these trainings and campaigns, in accordance with the ToT program (= training of trainers)
  • Campaigns on the International Women´s Day: on 8.3.2014, 104 representatives of four Ilam districts met at the shelter home to discuss women´s rights, violence against women and trafficking of girls and possibilities of assistance. The Itahari rehabilitation centre organized a campaign on the subject with the participation of 400 people.
  • Campaigns on the Day against Human Trafficking: the Pashupatinagar shelter house and rehabilitation home each carried out a workshop on the subject with a total of 144 participants and distributed information material. In addition, a rally was held in Itahari with a total of approx. 650 participants.
  • Campaigns on the International Day of Human Rights: on December 10, the rehabilitation home organized a rally with a total of approx. 600 participants. On the same day, also a workshop was held on the subject with 65 participants from organizations working in this field.
  • A 16-days signature campaign on violence against women: a total of 1200 signatures was collected. Also a campaign on the subject with 150 participants was carried out.
  • An essay competition on the subject of "Possibilities and Responsibilities of Students to Prevent Human Trafficking": a rehabilitation home was organized. 28 students from 7 schools participated in it.
  • Meeting of a total of 126 representatives of Indian and Nepalese non-government organisations in the Ilam district in order to coordinate cross-border actions as regards the protection against girls trafficking and safe border crossing when commencing work abroad.
  • In addition to the actions described above, a systematic information program on girls trafficking and possibilities of assistance taking into account village authorities and local institutions was carried out in eight villages in the Bhairahawa region. The methods included personal door-to-door discussions, street theatre, demonstrations and distribution of information material. These campaigns met with a lot of response and were talk of the town and/or village for quite some time. Because of its success, this program shall be extended as soon as funding has become available.

Aufklärung über Mädchenhandel in einem Dorf
Information on girls trafficking in a village

Informationsveranstaltung in einer Schule
Information event at a school

Schulung von Polizisten
Training of police officers

Straßentheater zur Aufklärung über Mädchenhandel
Street theatre to inform on girls trafficking

 

Project 2: Border guards

Border guards are saved young women who were trained by MAITI and are granted a job directly at the bustling entry checkpoints into India. And in light of their own experience, they talk directly to girls who seem to be in danger of being trafficked, offering immediate shelter in a refuge house.

Results 2014:

  • In 2013 in Pashupatinagar alone, overall 1,294 girls and/or young women were provided with information about the dangers of enslavement through individual conversations directly at the cross-over checkpoints into India. In addition, 20,000 cars, lorries and rickshaws were inspected.
  • 368 girls/young women could be convinced at the border that their trip into India can become extremely dangerous for them. They returned home or were transferred to the shelter home.
  • 926 girls/young women emigrating were provided information on the dangers of trafficking in India directly at the border crossing and about ways of protection.
  • Overall pro filia provided funds for the salaries of 20 border guards also in 2014. Each of them intervened with about 50 girls crossing into India, and placing each girl in a shelter. The border guards financed by pro filia, therefore, saved about 1000 girls/women from being sold into brothels, giving each one a real chance of an autonomous life.

Grenzbeobachterinnen in Pashupatinagar
Border guards in Pashupatinagar

Autokontrolle an der Grenze zu Indien
Car inspection at the border crossing into India


Project 3: The Pashupatinagar Transit home

Transit homes provide immediate shelter for girls in danger and also are the first refuge for those girls who were freed from Indian brothels. Schutzhäuser bieten gefährdeten Mädchen direkt an der Grenze sofortige Hilfe und sind auch der erste Zufluchtsort für die Mädchen, die aus indischen Bordellen befreit werden konnten. Also in 2014, pro filia provided funding in full for the Pashupatinagar transit home.

Das Schutzhaus Pashupatinagar
The Pashupatinagar transit home

Results 2014 for the Pashupatinagar Transit home:

  • The Transit home in Pashupatinagar provides shelter for 20 girls / young women at a time who sometimes stay for a short period only, sometimes for longer periods, just as needed. The parents are contacted if it is the girls´ wish. In family discussions, it is clarified whether the girl wishes to go home.
  • In 2014 the Transit home succeeded in preventing 456 girls and women from getting trafficked by intercepting them at the border.
  • Unfortunately, just one young woman was rescued from sexual slavery in Indian brothels in 2014 and returned to the Transit home in Pashupatinagar.
  • The Transit home is also the central local contact point concerning violence against young women and girls:  In 2014 there were 33 missing girls in Pashupatinagar, of whom MAITI  found (and returned home) 14.
  • In addition, 25 girls fled domestic violence to our shelter house.
  • In 2014 the Pashupatinagar Transit home organised a five-day training on mushroom farming for 60 single women from several villages to provide them a proper income and thus to protect them against the danger of enslavement.

Fotos mit vermissten Mädchen im Schutzhaus
Photos of missing girls in the Transit home

Mutter und Tochter im Schutzhaus
Mother and daughter in the Transit home

The financial support by pro filia for the Transit home Bhairahawa is only limited as other donors were found. The funds are used above all for the establishment of support networks and information campaigns in the Bhairahawa district which are organized by the Transit home. The results are shown under the topic Information campaigns.

Das Schutzhaus Bhairahawa
The Bhairahawa transit home

 

Project 4: Rehabilitation centre Itahari

Rescued girls who do not wish, or for some other reason cannot go home, are offered a place in a MAITI-run Rehabilitation centre. In turn, the centre prepares them for an autonomous life. They learn to read and write, and they participate in various training courses. For instance, there are training courses for modern agriculture, hotel cooking, sewing and more.

For 2012 and 2013, pro filia paid half of the expenses accruing. In 2014, all expenses could be financed thanks to donations from the art auctions by Zonta München-Friedensengel and pro filia in Münster.

Results 2014:

  • In 2014, 32 saved girls/young women were cared for in the Rehabilitation home. They start to learn how to read, write and calculate and receive a lot of information on their future daily life, such as protection against HIV, risks of early marriage, birth control, women´s rights, support possibilities and protection against human trafficking.
  • 27 girls/young women concluded the vocational training, 15 of them continued their education in a MAITI home in Kathmandu.
  • Their age was from 13 to 24 years.
  • If a girl wishes, MAITI offers mediation services – e.g. between parents and daughter. In 2014, mediation was provided in 37 cases - a total of 17 girls returned home to their families at their own request.
  • In case of criminal activities such as rape, girls trafficking, etc., charges are filed.

Lesen und schreiben lernen im Reha-Heim
Learning how to read and write in the Rehabilitation centre

Berufsausbildung im Reha-Heim
Professional training in the Rehabilitation centre

Trainingsabschluss im Reha-Heim
Training completion in the Rehabilitation centre

Freizeit im Reha-Heim
Leisure time in the Rehabilitation centre

 

Project 5: Mushroom farm

The mushroom farm serves as a homestead for saved young women who are broken mentally and physically due to the traumas suffered. If necessary, they are supported for the rest of their lives. Four saved young girls at a time live here. pro filia took over two-year start-up funding for the farm. According to MAITI, it is planned that the farm will pay for itself from revenues produced from 2015 on.

Arbeiten zur Pilzzucht
Mushroom farming works

 

Project 6: The IT project

pro filia wants to offer training not only in traditional women’s jobs, but also training to open new opportunities of work in a broader range of activities, with higher income potentials leading to more self-confidence. After a very successful test training period for eleven girls, pro filia has funded IT training for 40 girls per year since early 2013. The program is offered as a prevention on the one hand: girls from precarious family relationships are protected by this training against any trafficking. On the other hand, it also offers saved young women an independent life perspective. Also the expenses for the furnishings of the required  IT training room were paid.

Der erste PC-Kurs im neuen Ausbildungszentrum
The first IT training course in the new training centre

On the last meeting with MAITI at the end of 2013, it was resolved to set up a typing offing each at 20 locations in the Ilam (Pashupatinagar) district, staffed with 2 young women each who have completed the training. For this purpose, villages are selected where this service is not available yet. In addition to computers, copying machines will be installed. Besides these services, also information on girls trafficking and ways of protection are given. Based on this information and acquiring IT competences the resulting IT centres will not only provide jobs for the young women working there, but also protect other girls and young women who might be tempted by seemingly attractive job offers in India.

For the implementation of the typing offices, MAITI contacted village authorities to find out the demand. With their support and backing, attempts were made to win parents and further relatives of the young women for the project and to set up the typing office only afterwards. MAITI has described the set up and acceptance of the offices until now as a very successful endeavour. In 2014, pro filia funded the expenses for five typing offices and thus created jobs for 10 saved and IT trained young women. Currently, we are collecting donations for fifteen additional offices.

Einrichtung eines der ersten Schreibbüros
Setting up the first typing office

Angehörige informieren sich über den neuen Arbeitsplatz
Relatives familiarize themselves with the new workplace

Die Einrichtung der Schreibbüros löst ein großes Presse-Echo aus!
The press response after the setup of the
typing offices was enormous!

Überschrift:
Headline: "IT work against girl trafficking "

 

4.Activities in 2014

4.1 pro filia campaigns

Also in 2014, a number of campaigns was staged to promote the „girl trafficking“ topic and acquire new members and donations for our projects:

  • Main activity in 2014: collection of more than 3500 signatures against the mass murder of Indian baby girls from 8.3.-26.8.14.  
    With much enthusiasm and a lot of time spent, signatures were collected by the Board members, members and supporters and handed over to the Indian embassy on 29.8.2014 – after a long wait and several discussions with the security services on the street in front of the embassy until finally a political department staff member accepted the signatures. The handover was coupled with a 3-hours campaign in front of the embassy involving dolls which were suffocated symbolically with sand in the way it is done with Indian babies. In addition, flyers on the topic were distributed on a massive scale. The campaign met with very positive acceptance and support by the addressed people. Now, we will send letters to the Indian ambassador in Berlin to point to the femicide – until now without any response!

Aktion vor der indischen Botschaft in Berlin
Campaign in front of the Indian embassy

Übergabe der Unterschriften
Handing over the petition

On 28.8.2014, we handed over the petitions as copied versions to the human rights representative of the German government, Christoph Strässer. He was impressed and promised to invite the Indian ambassador to a discussion on the subject of girl homicide and to advocate with the German government coupling development aid to the observance of human rights and to implement the UN guidelines for economy and human rights.

In November 2014, we learnt from Mr. Strässer that the first meeting of a workgroup had been held on this subject in the Foreign Office under the participation of civil society representatives. Within the next two years, the implementation of the UN guidelines in Germany shall be achieved. We hope the best for this endeavour and will follow up on this. On request, Mr. Strässer also informed that he is still trying to invite the Indian ambassador for a discussion on the subject of mass murder on Indian baby girls – until now, however, likewise without any response!

Übergabe der Petition an Christoph Strässer,  Menschenrechtsbeauftragter der deutschen Bundesregierung
Handing over the petition to Christoph Strässer,
human rights representative of the German government

 

  • Further activities in 2014:

Doppelkopfabende am 28.2. und 7.11.2014 im Le Midi
Doppelkopf nights on 28.2. and 7.11.2014 at Le Midi

 

Informationsstand auf dem Kreuzviertelfest 23./24.8.14
Information booth on the Kreuzviertelfest 23./24.8.14

 
  • Spring 2014: Mailing out the Annual Report 2013 to about 400 persons
  • Entry into a human rights project of Realschule Kreuzviertel in September 2014

 

4.2 pro filia presentations:

  • WDR report on pro filia and invitation of the general manager as studio guest (26./27.2.14)
  • Further presentations:
Kolpingfamilie Ochtrup (16.2.14)
Kolpingfamilie Ochtrup (16.2.14) 

Round Table/Ladies Circle Rheine (24.3.14)
Round Table/Ladies Circle Rheine (24.3.14)

Rotary Club Emsdetten (15.9.14)
Rotary Club Emsdetten (15.9.14)

Begegnungscafé Mettmann (4.9.14)
Begegnungscafé Mettmann (4.9.14)

Staatliche Massageschule der Universitätsklinik Würzburg  (2.10.14)
Staatliche Massageschule of the Universitätsklinik Würzburg
(2.10.14)


4.3 pro filia exhibitions:

Café der Bäckerei Pohlmeier
Café of Pohlmeier bakery shop -  initiated by  
Elmar Möllers (early March until mid June 2014)

Alte Bürgermeisterei in Fox-Amphoux/Provence
Old mayor´s office in Fox-Amphoux/Provence
(2.-15.8.2014)
 

4.4 pro filia cooperations:

  • Soroptimist International Club Münster Mauritz since May 2014
  • Soroptimist International Club Rhenen-Veenendaal/Netherlands since October 2014

 

4.5 pro filia applications:

  • WN Christmas ralley (not attended)
  • Christmas market stall Münster on 17.12.14
  • Sponsors help (approved)
  • Bürgerpreis Stiftung für Münster (no success)
  • Funds for legal activities (approved)
  • Heidhorn foundation (no news yet)

 

4.6 Initiatives by pro filia members and supporters:

  • Boule tournaments
Konrad Averbeck bei der Vorbereitung des Boule-Turniers
Konrad Averbeck in preparing the Boule tournament

  • art exhibitions and charity concert (Monika Schiwy)
  • Nepal night Gilching on 14.2.2014 (Isabelle Feix, Tina Reuther)
  • Flea market stalls of SI Münster-Mauritz
  • Realschule Münster-Kreuzviertel (Mrs. Temme, Friederike Chudaske)
  • two days of massages against donations on 22./23.10.2014  (Norbert Hemrich, colleagues and students of Staatliche Massageschule at the Universitätsklinik Würzburg)
  • Concert in the Friedenskapelle Münster on 5.12.14 (Claudia Runde, Burkhard Schmidt)

 

4.7 Donations:
on the occasion of presentations, birthday parties, funerals, weddings.

 

4.8 Sponsoring:
Boesner (frames), Schatzinsel bookstore ("sold"), Burlage print shop (laminated photos), Botz (PR materials).

 

We would like to express our sincere thanks to all supporters of the activities, to all members, donors, stall keepers and cake bakers! Many thanks also to Norbert Langer who takes care of the English translation of the pro filia website.

 

5. Preview 2015

5.1. Projects planned for 2015

In 2015, the following projects will be funded at any rate:

  • information campaigns and establishment of support networks in the districts of Ilam/Pashupatinagar,  Bhairahawa und Itahari
  • the expenses for the Transit home Pashupatinagar at the Indian border into Darjeeling
  • the salaries for currently 20 border guards in total
  • partial funding of the Rehabilitation centre Itahari
  • funding of the IT training for 40 girls.
And we will do all that we can to not only continue the IT project but also to secure start-up funding for the 15 typing offices planned which allow the young women to generate their own income and – hopefully – to protect more girls against slavery by providing them with information.
 
In 2015, the executive director and a board member will travel again to Nepal to take stock, plan future developments and to inspect the projects. Should funding be available, we will pursue the following ideas:

  • self-defense course for girls
  • phone hotline for girls in danger:
  • an improved sanitary situation for border guards by installing toilets
  • women taxis: our proposal to train young women as chauffeurs which has been completely unusual in Nepal to date, was met with a great response. These women could offer a taxi service for other women one day, but could also drive representatives of NGOs such as pro filia who indeed are always depend on car transportation in the country but are consistently chauffeured by men. This project shall be approached as soon as the IT project pays for itself.

 

5.2. Activities planned for 2015

  • 3rd pro filia art auction on 18th/19th April 2015
  • Additional presentations wherever possible -  e.g., during ladies´ breakfast of our cooperation partner SI Club Münster Mauritz on 28.2.2015 and on the GGB spring conference at Stadthalle Lahnstein on 28.3.2015
  • Contacting tax consultants regarding balance donations
  • Distribution of flyers on the weekly market
  • pro filia dinner (members invite non-members to their home informing about pro filia. For this purpose, a Powerpoint presentation to present pro filia projects, was prepared and the required information listed in writing and mailed to all members. These photos and pertaining texts can be requested from pro filia at any time)
  • WN Christmas campaign 2015
  • Repeated contact to publishing houses
  • Increased involvement of schools
  • Video on pro filia
  • Systematic mailing of the Annual Report 2014.

 

6. What is the situation of the organization at the end of 2014?

6.1. Membership

We now count 160 members already!


6.2. Finances

On the general meeting on 14.11.2014, the Board was discharged as regards the 2013 and 2014 results (as of 31.10 2014). In 2014, pro filia transferred a total of nearly 63 000 Euros to MAITI. The expenses of about 5 000 Euros (programming, graphic design, IT and banking expenses) were paid from contributions and donations by executive committee members and the director.  From all remaining contributions and donations, 100% were sent to Nepal. About 43 000 Euros were carried over to the year 2015 – thus securing our first instalment to MAITI in April 2015.

A detailed balance of accounts for 2014 and a statement of all donations over 1000 Euros can be found - just as the accounts for 2008 to 2012 – on our homepage by clicking on ‘Voluntary declaration of commitment’.

6.3. Executive committee

In the general meeting of 2014, the pro filia executive committee was elected for two years - for the first time in extended form:

Der neu gewählte Vorstand
The newly elected executive committee
From left: Ina Specht, Bernd Brixius, Mechthild Spener,
Johanne Feldkamp (director),
Josef Humbert, Brigitte Wierling, Jan Sprünken

 

7. Various

  • The pro filia general meetings will be rescheduled for the spring time from 2015 on in order to be able to disclose the year-end report and the latest project figures from the previous year on an up-to-date basis.


We enter the year 2015 with confidence!
February 2015/Dr. Johanne Feldkamp, Director of pro filia e.V.