2022 Assembly


Instagram awareness-raising campaign: LIKE A SNOWFLAKE


Our work can often be compared to a snowflake: just as each snowflake is unique, every survivor’s story is different. Human trafficking is not about statistics; it’s about people. All the pain and hardship, the achievements and setbacks in the healing process reveal the inner beauty of surviving evil.


To build upon the awareness about Human Trafficking which was raised  by the EU Day Against Human Trafficking, 18 October 2019, you are invited to contribute to the Instagram campaign LIKE A SNOWFLAKE.
By sharing the stories of survivors, we can raise awareness about human trafficking and the work we do to help those we serve. We can help change the way people think and respond to exploitation. We want to show the many facets of trafficking and how no one person’s story is alike We want to show the beauty and strength that can come from surviving something so heinous. We also want to highlight that this is not a minor crime that affects few people, but that we are facing a widespread criminal enterprise and major violation of human rights, in Europe and globally.

To this end, we have created a dedicated Instagram page to present the stories behind THB.

To participate, take a photo of a victim/survivor or an impersonator from behind and in an emblematic place of your city (a tourist attraction, a famous site, a monument, etc.). Include a few lines to tell the story behind the image, or the message or thoughts that the person wants to share.

The person should not be recognizable (put a fictitious name) and should have their arms open and raised in the air, with open palms.


Mail Text example:

My name is Grace. When I arrived from Nigeria my Madam told me that if I asked for help, I would be deported, so I thought had no other choice but to become a prostitute. My mother begged me to do what they said. You don’t feel like a person when you are treated like a commodity.

From Barcelona, APIP-ACAM FONDATION contact :

Email your picture and story to: or with the name of the city, of your organization and a contact person.

The name of the Instagram page will be communicated later on, once it starts getting populated.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

We look forward to your participation to make the “Like a Snowflake” campaign succeed.

Warm regards,


Natalia Massé                                                            Silvia Lamonaca

Fundació APIP-ACAM                                                  PAYOKE                                        



Natalia Massé

Fundació APIP-ACAM

Carrer Riereta 18, 08001 Barcelona

Tel.: 93.442.09.17 Fax: 93.442.23.23 I


Each October, Europe takes time to pause, to turn our attention to those who are caught in worlds of Human Trafficking and those whose lives have been challenged, affected and fractured by exploitation for the purpose of generating a profit.

This year, MECPATHS (Mercy Efforts for Child Protection Against Trafficking With the Hospitality Sector), were extremely proud to partner with The Department of Justice and Equality to mark EU Anti Trafficking Day, October 18th, to raise awareness, to discuss and to collaborate and to bring the issue of Modern Day Slavery ‘to the courts.’

RENATE members at MECPATHS Ireland send their report on how they marked the occasion of the EU Day Against Human Trafficking, 18 October, 2019, available on the following link:

Photos from the event are available at:

Publication of the UK’s Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner’s Strategic Plan 2019 – 2021


Publication of the UK’s Independent Anti-Slavery
Commissioner’s Strategic Plan 2019 – 2021
(published today 18 October 2019).

Dame Sara Thornton was appointed as the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner by the Secretary of State following consultation with the Scottish Ministers and the Department of Justice in Northern Ireland. She took up post at the beginning of May 2019 and her appointment is for three years.

The Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner has today published her Strategic Plan for 2019 – 2021. The Strategic Plan has been laid before Parliament by the Secretary of State (Home Secretary) in accordance with the Modern Slavery Act (2015).

The Strategic Plan outlines the objectives and priorities for the period 2019 – 2021 and identifies matters on which the Commissioner proposes to report.

There are four priorities:

  • Improving victim care and support
  • Supporting law enforcement and prosecutions
  • Focusing on prevention
  • Getting value from research and innovation

Read the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner’s Strategic Plan 2019 – 2021

Council of Europe mark the 18th October, 2019.


The Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Marija Pejčinović Burić, has urged countries across the continent to make sure that victims of human trafficking receive justice, including financial compensation, for the abuses they suffer.

On the eve of European Anti-trafficking Day (18 October), the Secretary General said: “People who trade in human beings subject their victims to the most horrendous forms of exploitation and abuse.

“Traffickers must be rigorously prosecuted and punished, but justice must also be done to the victims of trafficking – by making sure they receive compensation, they are protected from being trafficked again and they are given sufficient help to put their lives back together.”

Launched in 2005, the Council of Europe’s Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings is the first international treaty to require states to make sure that victims are compensated for the damages they have suffered.

RENATE Policy Statement on Human Trafficking and the Law.


‘RENATE endeavours to abolish all forms of human trafficking and exploitation that violates the human dignity and rights of persons. 

Throughout its European Network, RENATE adopts a Victim-Centred, Human Rights, Trauma-informed approach in relation to the Law.’


Mindful of the RENATE Policy statement above, the RENATE network has planned a number of events to mark the 9th European Union Day against Human Trafficking. Some examples are as follows:

  1. RENATE members at CARITAS Slovakia share with us their social media campaign below:


“They threatened if I stopped with prostitution my kids and I would end up on the street. They would inform the Social office that my children have bruises from being beaten, that I perform prostitution and would lose my kids in the end. I didn´t even know what day it was. They told me what was going to happen if I decide to escape or tell anyone.

People say time is a great healer but it’s not true. Even now after some time has passed am I able to forget. However, I try to think about the future. I managed to cut loose from the environment that I have very bad memories of and try to live a normal life. I have kids and I take care of them the best I can. My biggest desire is for my children to be healthy and happy. When they are happy, I am too. We are not alone anymore. I met a person that we matter to. He helps me with everything, together we fight… “

Photo by Tony Frič


 “When I look back at my past I feel upset. I wish something like that would never happen to me ever again.

I would like to change my life, start a family. Devote my time to people in need. I started to attend a secondary school as I believe it is important to acquire some kind of a skill..  I have a reason to live – a son who lives in an orphanage. I care a lot about him and visit him regularly. I wish to have my own home and be happy again…”  Photo by Tony Frič

2. RENATE members in Hungary share news of their one-day conference on a Holistic Approach for Victims of Human Trafficking, which will be held at the House of Dialogue.

In collaboration with the SOLWODI Hungary Association (Solidarity for Women in Need), the ORFK and the House of Dialogue, the day is aimed at the Religious in our communities who are actively engaged in ministering to Victims of Human Trafficking and are working to combat Human Trafficking.

The day will involve input from experts familiar with the topic, plus a series of workshops to provide further insight and knowledge which can be used at a practical level, as follows:

  1. Therapeutic methods for helping abused children.
  2. Child abuse and crisis management.
  3. Experiences in serving Hungarian women who have been victims of Human Trafficking in Austria.
  4. Opportunities for Prevention- especially for young people.
  5. Rehabilitation and integration in a sheltered house.

An impressive line-up of speakers will officiate during the day, including Szabolcs Sajgó, SJ, (host); H.E. Michael August Blume, Papal Nuncio & Ambassador of the Holy See in Hungary; a representative from the Ministry of the Interior; Gabriella Legradi, SCSC, President of SOLWODI Hungary Association; Ágnes Németh, Police Colonel ORFK; Drd. Leah Ackermann, SMNDA, Founder SOLWODI Hungary Association; and Déli Biró, clinical psychologist.

Full information at:

3. RENATE members in Ireland send us news of the event organised by both MECPATHS (Mercy Efforts for Child Protection Against Trafficking with the Hospitality Sector), and the governmental Department of Justice and Equality, held in the Courthouse, Washington Street, Cork city, on 17 October.

The event titled ‘’Frederick Douglass: a Living Legacy,’’ sought to honour the efforts of the American abolitionist Frederick Douglass to counter slavery and examine our responses to Human Trafficking in Ireland today.

President Michael D. Higgins sent a letter of support, which was read at the event and Minister David Stanton, FG, Minister of State for Equality, Immigration and Integration spoke to us via satellite feed from overseas.  Inputs from Kevin Hyland, OBE; Senator Gerry Buttimer, FG; Assistant Garda Commissioner John O’ Driscoll; Mary Crilly, Sexual Violence Centre Cork and founding member of Cork Against Human Trafficking; JP O’ Sullivan, MECPATHS Ireland and others, ensured those who attended were not only well informed but motivated to become involved in anti-human trafficking work within their own communities and further afield.

4. Our colleagues at SOLWODI Romania have been busy organising awareness-raising events, giving presentations to youth and children in foster care, boarding schools and high schools, from 16-19 October 2019, on the topic ‘’Human Trafficking and Security considerations when using the Internet.’’

On the eve of the 18th October, they held a  Prayer-service at St. Elizabeth parish, Timisoara, where people gathered to reflect, share, understand and pray together.

5. October is designated a national anti-trafficking month in Albania and RENATE members have been busy organising a variety of events to raise awareness about Human Trafficking and Exploitation, as well as encourage engagement of both Government and Civil Society in collaboration to work to combat Human Trafficking and Exploitation.

This year, the URAT network are hosting the UN GiftBox initiative in Elbasan.

6. RENATE members at Different and Equal in Albania, held information seminars on 16 October, for students at the Alexander Moisiu High School. This was a most successful event, in collaboration with the pedagogical staff and the school psychologist and Different and Equal look forward to building upon such collaborations into the future.

For more, please see: ,  and



More features in the coming weeks from the RENATE network as they marked the 18th October.


Prepared by Anne Kelleher, RENATE Communications.