A three-day refreshers’ ToT on psycho-social counseling for child survivors of human trafficking

A three-day refreshers’ ToT on psycho-social counseling for child survivors of human trafficking was organized by INCIDIN Bangladesh and the PCTSCN Consortium from 19-21 November 2016. About 30 participants from various governmental and non-governmental organizations working in combating child-related violence, trafficking, rescue and rehabilitation etc. took part in the training programme. Dr. Aminul Islam, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Women and Children Affairs and National Coordinator, SAIEVAC Bangladesh was present in the opening ceremony as the Chief Guest. Mr. A.K.M. Masud Ali, Executive Director, INCIDIN Bangladesh and Chair, ATSEC Bangladesh and NACG Bangladesh participated participated as the Chair in the opening ceremony. Adv. Md. Rafiqual Islam Khan, Project Coordinator, PCTSCN project acted as the facilitator to the entire training programme. The training was conducted by Md. Aminul Islam Mukul.

In his welcome speech, A.K.M. Masud Ali iterated the importance of psychosocial counseling services for the recovery of the survivors’ mental and/or physical health and the first step into reintegrating into the society. He welcomed the counselors in the training programme and hoped that the training will be helpful in their professional duties.

In the Chief Guest’s speech, Dr. Aminul Islam stated that trafficking survivors need care and compassion for recovering and finally readjusting with the society. He said that each year a lot of children and women are being trafficked to foreign countries from the South Asia region and SAIEVAC- a regional intergovernmental body of within the countries of SAARC region is coordinating efforts and programmes to eradicate violence against children. He expressed that psychosocial counseling is a vital part for restoring the survivors in society and that the counselors are the pivotal instruments that drive the whole process. He hoped that this training would help the participants to conduct counseling more effectively and wished success to the programme.

Md. Aminul Islam Mukul conducted the three-day training which encompassed the basic concepts of psychosocial counseling and individual case management. At the start of the training participants were asked about what they expected from the training programme. Based on their demand, the training focused especially on their needs and expectations.

The certification and closing ceremony was held on 21 November 2016. Among the guests at the closing were Mr. A.K.M. Masud Ali, Executive Director, INCIDIN Bangladesh and Chair, ATSEC Bangladesh and NACG Bangladesh; Mr. Manabendranath Mandal, Executive Director, SLARTC and Coordinator, ATSEC India; and Mr. Thangaperumal Ponpandi, Programme Manager, Child Trafficking and Migration in Asia, TdH-Netherlands.

In his speech, Mr. Thangaperumal Ponpandi asserted that while the policymakers may formulate and direct policies it’s the counselors who actually make a mark in the practical field, the real-world situation. Therefore the training is important for counselors to hone their skills. He wished the participants good luck and hoped it will help the trainees to counsel more effectively.

Mr. Manabendranath Mandal said that he has a close working relationship with Bangladesh on the issue of trafficking for a long time. Human trafficking is a severe violation of human rights. He said that ATSEC is trying hard to eradicate human trafficking so that the people of South Asia can be safe. He asserted that the trafficking survivors deserve to be integrated into the society and the counselors have the first responsibility to their recovery. He expressed hope that the training will be helpful to the participants in achieving that task

A.K.M. Masud Ali thanked and congratulated the participants on completing the training and hoped that it will effectively help them in their professional duties. On behalf of the participants multiple trainees shared their feelings and opinions on the training. After the certification ceremony, the training was concluded.