We are pleased to announce that Helen Sworn, long with Chino our new international assistant, has moved back to England to expand our reach and vision of Chab Dai.
"I am excited to take lessons learned on how Cambodia has come together as a community to address trafficking and take that DNA to our international office and the work we’re about to start there. Cambodia has been seen as a country that only receives: help from overseas, money from overseas, expertise from overseas, but Cambodia has so much to teach the rest of the world and the anti-trafficking community here has so much to teach the rest of the anti-trafficking community around the world. And that will be the foundation from which Chab Dai, international office, will start.
Previously it was seen that Cambodia and South East Asia has been the epicenter of exploitation and trafficking. We need to widen our horizon and understanding that this is a global problem and that it is in all of our backyards."
Through the office in London we will be closer to support our work in Europe and Africa. In Europe, we hope to support those organizations working to address the Refugee Crisis.
"The current EU refugee crisis has meant that already vulnerable populations are being driven into exploitation and trafficking. This is on a scale that is unprecedented in Europe and we need to bring together grassroots service providers, UN agencies, and government to take this away from being an immigration problem to being a human rights problem."
Our work will continue to take us into Africa as we support the starting of several new coalitions.
"It’s been exciting to see how African nations are wanting to establish coalitions and not just talk about it. The first Uganda coalition, anti-trafficking coalition, started this year  from a journey two years ago when they visited Cambodia to see what a coalition looked like on the ground and how they have now taken those lessons learned and created a very Ugandan collation for a Ugandan context."
Nineteen years ago Helen Sworn saw gaps in the system here in Cambodia. She saw how clients fell through the cracks, how by working together the established organizations could better serve the community. Chab Dai Cambodia was always intended to be a local run organization. With Helen's leaving Cambodia, Chab Dai can grow and mature into a purely Cambodian run organization.
While we will miss her, she is carrying Chab Dai into a new adventure. As she heads back to the UK, she will begin to apply the knowledge from efforts here and apply them to fledgling coalitions around the world. It is the next step after almost twenty years of garnering expertise and wisdom, bringing it across borders and helping to train others in the successes and stumbling blocks of collaboration.
This focus of working together, of communication across NGOs, businesses, and diverse stake holders has the potential to change the world – and we do not take that lightly. With the backing of Chab Dai’s board, Helen will work in tandem with organizations from across the globe to make a better connected, cohesive, and concentrated effort to end human slavery and exploitation for good.
So we want to say a heartfelt “Thank You!” to the woman who helped to build this organization from the ground up, to a woman who has poured time and energy into her work and the people that do this work. And even though we will mourn her absence, we know that whatever comes next will be just as groundbreaking and world changing as everything else she has done.
Chino has no clue what is happening, but is very excited to support Helen in England. :) More updates about our work in Europe will continue to come in, so stay tuned!