Arz was conceived in 1997 by a group of Development Professionals
from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bombay, with the idea of social
work interventions in the area of crime with persons who have been victims
of commericial sexual exploitation, those who are perpetrators and those
who are vulnerable to both.
The organization is registered under the Indian Societies
Registration Act (1860), Bombay Trust Act (1950) and U/s 80(G) of the
Income Tax Act. Although the organization works primarily in Goa, it also
extends services in the form of liasing, to certain districts of Karnataka,
Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Tamilnadu, West Bengal and Orissa which have
been identified as chief source states and neighboring countries of Nepal
and Bangladesh as chief source countries. Key functioning areas include
prevention, protection, rescue, repatriation, rehabilitation, health,
after-care, re-integration, prosecution of perpetrators, legal counselling,
economic rehabilitation, research, documentation, training and advocacy.
The organization has been appointed as the nodal NGO in
the Integrated Anti-Human Trafficking Unit which was set up by the Goa
Police for the purpose of providing witnesses, conducting rescue operations
along with police, training and counseling of rescued persons, assisting
in interviews of rescued persons, networking with other NGOs for all activities,
empowerment of rescued persons and ensuring their proper rehabilitation.
This has given the organization the authority to start working more closely
with the system. It has clearly defined the role of Arz in working towards
combating trafficking in Goa along with the criminal justice system.
- Commercial sexual exploitation of persons is the most heinous crime
against human beings
- Commercial sexual exploitation is a form of bonded slavery that results
in consistent and unrecognized victimization of the most marginalized
and stigmatized group in society
- Through effective social work intervention it is possible to limit
trafficking of human beings as well as limit abuse and exploitation
of trafficked victims
Swift Wash - A self-help
The Economic Rehabilitation Programme
inititated by Arz in 2006 to cater to the economic empowerment of
victims of sexual exploitation led to the setting up of Swift Wash,
a fully mechanized laundry unit in Sancoale, Goa for providing employment
to the victims of commercial sexual exploitation. Currently, the
unit is providing employment to 35 women and girls and 15 boys.
Documentary on Swift Wash
Arz has adopted an holistic approach in the programme,
as it was felt that the rehabilitation of the victim alone could
not support her in continuing her struggle to live a life free from
exploitation. A change has to be brought about in the different
stake holders in her life. So, the perpetrators, the spouses of
these women, the adult male children and relatives in her family,
are also provided rehabilitation under the same programme.