Moldova is the poorest country in Europe.
More than 50% of the labor force left the country in last 10 years to find work abroad, most of them illegally.
More than 100,000 people are victims of human trafficking.
More than 30,000 girls and women have disappeared without a trace.
More than 30% of the nation's children are "social orphans" (parents leave their children with extended family, orphanages, or neighbors for years at a time to work abroad).
Lack of a future brought a ‘new national idea’ among youth – to leave the country at any price.
Because of that Beginning of Life (BoL) started the following projects:
Raising awareness in society
There are a lot of corrupt structures in Moldova. Many officials are involved in human trafficking as recruiters, bonzes and agents. International organizations initiated a few campaigns on the national level to raise awareness, and some NGOs joined this movement. However, in spite of that, human trafficking and illegal migration didn’t stop. Unfortunately, most of the victims are young people.
Beginning of Life is involved in the following areas:
Raising awareness in the Evangelical churches. We organized around 20 seminars and trainings in churches, educating them how to work with their neighbors and relatives, preventing them from slavery. Each seminar hosted approximately 20-25 people.
Organizing National Day of Prayer. For two years the Beginning of Life team helped the Union of Evangelical Baptists Church in Moldova to organize a National Day of Prayer, combing efforts with the Moldavian Orthodox Church and Evangelical Lutheran Church in Moldova. Prayer events were organized in every church in Moldova, at the Central Square in Chisinau, in NGOs and private apartments.
The President of Beginning of Life was a part of a big press conference on the human trafficking issue.
Two programs about Beginning of Life were televised on different TV channels.
Organizing conferences. Beginning of Life organized a large national conference in 2006 on human trafficking. In September 2010 we hosted a pan-European conference on prostitution and human trafficking.
Center for rehabilitation and reintegration of the victims of the human trafficking
Beginning of Life provides services in the Safe House with a specifically designed program for each individual, depending on her past, education, family status, etc. Currently, Beginning of Life has facilities and staff to provide services for eight ladies. We provide the following services for them:
- Full accommodation (bedrooms, food, medical assistance, etc).
- Psychological counseling.
- Social assistance. Our social workers live with the girls 24 hours per day, taking care of all their needs and educating them basic life skills.
- Cultural program. We organize special events for the girls, inviting them to the theatres, concerts and public places. This helps them see the good parts of society and to be among people.
- Spiritual assistance. We organize Bible classes for them. We give them an opportunity to attend worship in different churches. Most of them choose Evangelical churches.
- Art-therapy. Art is God’s creation. When people with psychological trauma have very low self-esteem, they need something that will show them that they have special gifts. A special trainer identifies their talents and works with them, educating them about how to create something special – articles from beads, cards, painting, sewing, etc.
- Drama-therapy. Most of the victims are depressed and they are not ready to share their past. They are closed emotionally. Drama helps them to experience another’s emotions, to feel something else. This is a great tool to open their inner world, to find a key to their hearts. Because of that they become more open to sharing about their own fears, feelings and hopes.
- Trade schools. During our time with the ladies, we discover their skill sets and how they could use these skills for professional pursuits. Then we advise them and connect them with different trade schools to receive professional training, which will give them an opportunity for employment in the future.
- Re-integrating them into society. During the last stage of care, we work together with the girls, seeking for them a good place to work. They continue to live in our center as they make these first steps towards a new places of employment. We meet with their employers, trying to find a common language with them. After a women successfully works in one place for last least one month, then we find a separate place for her to live. For a few months we help by paying the rent until she has her own sustainability.
- After-care relations. We invite the ladies to attend our meetings, to be with us on the holidays, and to simply visit us from time to time.
Ministry to the girls from vulnerable families
Many of the victims of human trafficking are from vulnerable families. Parents in such families have different disabilities: addiction from alcohol or drugs, psychiatrist deviations, etc. We see that many girls from such families have only one way to live – to go to the streets or to go abroad. And because of their lack of education, they are easy prey for traffickers or pimps. We work with the directors of public schools and city’s social departments to identify together the most vulnerable girls.
- Scholarships. Beginning of Life helps to discover the passion and skills of each lady and pays for their studies in Universities or trade schools. This provides them with professional training, which helps them to be marketable in the workplace.
- Social assistance. A social worker visits them in their homes and schools from time to time, speaking with the parents and teachers.
- Counseling. Each girl comes for counseling at least once per month. A psychologist observes her progress and gives advices for her personal life.