Asia Region Anti-Trafficking Conference - Day Two

Recently we just finished hosting our first Asia Region Anti-Trafficking Conference in partnership with STOP THE TRAFFIK Australia. We both believe that businesses, unions, government, academia and NGOs really need to work together. Only together can we end this crime and change the lives of many people. It’s a shared responsibility and it takes multi-sector collaboration. Today we continue to hear from our dear friend, Lisa Cheong, as she recalls her experience at the conference.


Day 2 was our first full day of learning at the ARAT conference. We were hearing from four different plenaries on big picture updates and on how to we can all work more innovatively.

Helen starting us off with an overview of the Partnership Roadmap – an evaluation of how to identify the best partnership solution. This was a great reminder that partnerships are not fixed, but dynamic.

At a grass roots level, we had the opportunity to hear from how a medical doctor, a lawyer and a labor rights organization were working together to tackle forced labor in the fishing industry. We then witnessed a powerful example about how an NGO and a global leading seafood business can work together to clean up its supply chain but also using digital traceability to give fishermen voices while they are out at sea. Technology continues to be an innovative solution to addressing some of the challenges that fishermen face as they work for an extended period of time at sea.

One of the most interesting discussions was how NGOs and the finance sector are disrupting traffickers through AML (an Anti-Money Laundering system) that tracks financial transactions of perpetrators. Not your typical partnership, but a great example of what is possible when unlikely partnerships join together!

In the afternoon, we saw more examples of collaboration with the CEO of Hagar and Justice & Soul Foundation, discussing the importance of why trauma recovery and sustainable employment need to go hand in hand.

Today was a full day and for me personally, I love seeing this shift towards bringing the private sector into the dialogue. This has not been the case for too long, and there needs to be a greater awakening that businesses also need to be part of the anti-trafficking conversation.

As Helen Sworn said on the onset: "We are addressing a networked problem which needs a networked solution. This means we need strategic and international partnerships!" Multi-sector collaboration is key to closing the loop as each sector brings their core competencies to the table alongside other partners!

Written by 

Lisa J Cheong, Managing Director of Indradevi Consulting Group (ICG) - Cambodia

At ICG, we seek to create a future that awakens passion, ignites purpose and unleashes the unique potential of Khmer women and girls in all spheres of society through a collaborative process. As a women’s training development company, we provide holistic, customized and contextualized value-based training solutions focused on engaging, equipping and empowering women and girls with the tools and skills needed to enhance their personal and professional development.


Joseph ArnholdComment