Counter trafficking in persons (CTIP)
The Counter Trafficking in Persons Office (CTIP) is a joint project of the LCCL ( Leadership Conference of Consecrated Life ) and the SACBC ( Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference). It was set up in January 2008 and housed at the SACBC headquarters in Pretoria, South Africa. One Sister was chosen to coordinate the project – Sr Melanie O’Connor of the Holy Family Sisters of Bordeaux in South Africa. A support committee for the office was set up in 2009, consisting of executive members from LCCL and SACBC who meet three times a year. The office is responsible for raising its own funds for overhead expenses as well as the activities it plans.
Our vision is the creation of a world in which all its peoples are safe, respected, valued and given the dignity which is their fundamental human right; a world where no one seeks to exploit and enslave another for the purpose of any gain. Our aim is to have the Church at all levels and society as a whole be made aware of the existence of human trafficking and its effects on the individual, the family and society as a whole, so that we fight to abolish this terrible evil and protect the vulnerable -the potential victims of human trafficking. Our main objective has been the protection of potential victims of trafficking through: • 2 – 3 day Capacity Building Workshops – firstly targeting each diocese of the Conference. • Co-ordinating the efforts and projects of trainees • Providing material on human trafficking • Raising awareness in schools and communities • Partnering with other organisations, government and police • Research • Mobilising women’s groups within the church to fight against human trafficking and practices that undermine the dignity of girls. To date the Office has conducted over 100 Capacity Building Workshops to combat human trafficking. These have taken place in South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho and Botswana. A number of trainees in turn are conducting awareness programs in their respective areas. A fairly wide impact is made by trainees especially in township and rural areas. Some have identified victims of human trafficking and with the help of IOM assisted them to return to their own countries. Celebrating Big Events CTIP organised three big events in its awareness raising campaign: (i)The Celebration of Holy Mass, to pray for an end to Human Trafficking and the protection of children during the World Cup, was held on Saturday 8 May, 2010 in the grounds of Christian Brothers College, Pretoria. (ii) An Interfaith Prayer Service and march on Saturday, 6 August, 2011 in honour of Women’s Day and to pray for and express our solidarity with victims of abuse and human trafficking. (iii) As part of ongoing research CTIP paid a visit to Musina and the Beitbridge border between South Africa and Zimbabwe during the first half of 2011 and organised an exposure documentary on what was happening there for the Leihlo la Sechaba programme on SABC 2. “Truckers Against Human Trafficking” Campaign During our Talitha Kum Human Trafficking Conference held from 9-12 April, 2013, we launched our “Truckers against Human Trafficking” campaign. Representatives from our trucking industry were invited to the ceremony. The campaign was also broadened to include the pastoral care of truckers on the road for which we produced a booklet. “ Taxis Against Human Trafficking Campaign was launched during our Talitha Kum Southern Africa Conference in 2016.