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Talitha Kum - Nigeria

Year of foundation: 1999

Nigeria Conference of Women Religious (NCWR) Awareness was created among the women religious in Nigeria on the emergence and evil of a modern day slave trade, namely Trafficking in Human Persons in the late 90s by the UISG and USMI through Sr. Eugenia Bonetti. In quick response, the Major Superiors of Nigeria Conference of Women Religious (NCWR) established the Committee for the Support of the Dignity of Women (COSUDOW) in 1999 to combat Human Trafficking. It was the first organization in Nigeria to address the issue of human trafficking in collaboration with UISG and USMI in Italy. Its mission was to rescue, shelter, restore self-dignity and rehabilitate victims deported from Europe or voluntary returnees of human trafficking. Since inception, it has saved and rehabilitated many returnees and survivors. The project is located in Benin City, Edo State of Nigeria where most of the returnees come from. The victims of human trafficking return home totally abused, dehumanized and traumatized to the extent that some of them end up with mental and debilitating illnesses. COSUDOW rescues, restores, reconciles and rehabilitates victims repatriated or voluntary returnees. It creates awareness in schools, communities, streets, etc, on the reality and ills of human trafficking to stop or prevent its further spread. It liaises and collaborates with governments and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to tackle the menace and refers to them as the case may be. Being the brain child of NCWR, Congregations take turns to run it. It is presently being managed by the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul with Sr. Philomena Okwu DC as the present Coordinator.

Mission Statement: To promote the dignity of young girls and women through education on their dignity, rights, sex, family and responsibilities and advance the well being of the downtrodden women exposing them to equal opportunities in the social-political sphere. Vision: A society where young girls and women are liberated, empowered, active, valued, protected and rise above cultural practices that mitigate against their dignity Core Values: Respect, Compassion, Charity, Integrity and Trustworthiness with the mercy of God as our guiding principle Objectives: 1. To educate families and young people on the hazards involved in travelling to Europe or elsewhere for greener pasture. 2. To provide shelter and rehabilitation to the young women repatriated or those who opted out of prostitution 3. To provide counseling services and spiritual direction to enable the young girls to regain their self-dignity and worth 4. To work in collaboration with Government Agencies and Non-Governmental Organizations involved in the fight against human trafficking 5. To address other social issues that affect women and children 6. To enlighten and sensitize the general public on the evil of human trafficking through awareness campaigns, printed and social media