IOM Launches New Anti-Trafficking Campaign in Mongolia
Ulan Bator – Mongolia is a source and destination country for men, women and children subjected to trafficking in persons for the purpose of sexual exploitation and forced labour. Official police statistics indicate that 350 individuals were identified as victims within Mongolia and abroad in 2012-2020. At least 70 per cent of victims of trafficking for sexual exploitation assisted in Mongolia are girls and women who were lured into sex trafficking in an attempt to better their lives and social status.
It was with this background in mind that on 5 March 2021, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in partnership with the Coordination Council of Crimes Prevention of Mongolia launched a public information campaign in Mongolia entitled Dream Umbrella – Мөрөөдлийн шүхэр to raise awareness among young women on what human trafficking entails, where to report the crime or access reliable and trustworthy information, and how to refer a case or seek help.
Dream Umbrella is based on IOM’s successful IOM X project, which uses Communication for Development (C4D) methodology, a participatory communication campaign approach aimed to address the prevalent knowledge and attitudinal gaps on human trafficking and to provide concrete actions and behaviors for targeted public audience.
In line with the C4D model, IOM identified the campaign focus, developed and reviewed its content through preparatory workshops and focus group discussions involving diverse stakeholders. Pre and post surveys are also conducted with over 500 young women between the ages of 18-27 to assess current levels of knowledge of human trafficking and measure the impact of the campaign.
The campaign was officially launched at the meeting of the Sub-Council on Trafficking in Persons and through a public interactive exhibit in the capital city of Ulan Bator.
“During the campaign, step by step activities will be organized with the purpose of preventing girls and women from becoming victims of this crime, increasing public awareness, enhancing the cooperation between government and non-government organizations, as well as media outlets,” explained Ms Lkhamtogmid Nyamgerel, Head of the Sub-Council on Trafficking in Persons and Head of the Coordination Council of Crimes Prevention.
Over the 21 days of the campaign, IOM will broadcast, nationally and locally, videos and animations to recognize the signs of trafficking in persons and to empower girls and women to make informed choices about job opportunities and migration decisions.
Posters will be placed in strategic public areas and transit points in Ulan Bator and Darkhan Uul. On the last day of the campaign, murals depicting campaign key messages will be created in these cities, in addition to other outreach activities such as informative stands with virtual reality games, social media challenges, flyers, to maximize the campaign’s impact.
A Facebook page (Dream Umbrella – Мөрөөдлийн шүхэр) has been created as the primary hub for campaign information and it includes Mongolia’s first counter-trafficking chatbot.
“Through this campaign we hope that more and more young women will feel empowered to make informed decisions regarding their future and ultimately protect their dreams as the Dream Umbrella’s slogan goes,” said Giuseppe Crocetti, Chief of Mission of IOM China and Mongolia.
The campaign launch was preceded by a training and scholarship program for 40 journalists on how to accurately report stories of human trafficking, at the end of which six project proposals were awarded and selected for publication on national and local media.
The campaign is funded by the Ministry for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation of the Government of the Netherlands within the framework of the project Strengthening Mongolia’s efforts to prevent and respond to human trafficking. “Together we can be successful in the fight against human trafficking. Together we can, and must, protect the dreams of young Mongolian women,” said H.E. Mr. Wim Geerts, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to China and Mongolia.
For more information, please contact Veronica Scarozza, Counter-Trafficking Project Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org