25 October 2017
IOM Ukraine’s Economic Empowerment Programme for former victims of human trafficking received powerful support from Robert Bosch Ltd in Ukraine. As a pilot initiative, 34 former victims of trafficking from Kharkiv and Sumy regions who are self-employed in the construction sphere with IOM’s support, received a hundred units of brand new power tools and equipment. The new equipment will make their work easier and allow them to broaden the scope of their services, thus increasing their income. The tools and equipment were supplied to IOM Ukraine’s Economic Empowerment Programme by Bosch at wholesale prices, and further distributed among the Programme beneficiaries.
Bosch in Ukraine continuously demonstrates their commitment to IOM in assisting vulnerable populations, including trafficking awareness public initiatives and economic empowerment of trafficking survivors. This summer, the company supported the Alley of Dreams outdoor event for children in Kyiv, where more than 400 children from vulnerable categories, those living in family-type homes and foster families, were engaged in various anti-trafficking prevention activities. In addition, Bosch in Ukraine helped organize the IOM Business Fair and Forum, by providing expert advice about energy efficiency technologies for IOM-supported micro-enterprise owners, as well as demonstrating respective Bosch products which they can use to enhance their businesses and services.
IOM started its Economic Empowerment Programme for sustainable reintegration of victims of trafficking in 2006, in order to help trafficking survivors better reintegrate into society and prevent their re-trafficking. Programme beneficiaries are first trained in business management and then develop their business plans to apply for a grant. The small startup grants are awarded on a competitive basis to empower former victims of trafficking in creating their own income-generating opportunities, improving their chances of employment, and helping them become more self-reliant and economically independent. Almost 900 former victims have benefited from IOM’s Economic Empowerment Programme, creating hundreds of new jobs and contributing tens of thousands of hryvnias in local taxes.
With its vast project portfolio, it has always been a strategic priority for the IOM Mission in Ukraine to promote corporate social responsibility by engaging private businesses to contribute to sustainable development by delivering social benefits to vulnerable populations. IOM believes that Ukraine is a place where hundreds of businesses are open and ready to make a difference through actions that would advance social good far beyond the interest of private companies.