Victims Protection

NGO Atina has developed a number of different programs whose common goal is to facilitate the creation of sustainable system of social inclusion. Activities within these programs range from providing assistance in approach to, and realization of, fundamental rights, through development of an adequate approach for the inclusion of beneficiaries in different systems (health, social security, etc.), up to the rehabilitation of consequences that have occurred due to sustained violence, and situation of trafficking, and support in gaining independence. Regardless of the standardized program activities, NGO Atina’s starting point remains the creation of programs according to requirements and needs of each individual victim.

Three basic types of support are implemented via the Temporary House, Open Club and Field Support Team. Phases by which these programs are implemented mainly coincide and are arranged as follows:

  • solving acute problems that exist or have occurred during the start of the program;
  • establishing deadlines for assessing the status of beneficiaries;
  • establishing baseline status in the areas of importance for the beneficiary;
  • designing an individual plan;
  • monitoring and evaluation of the status in the areas of importance for the beneficiary;
  • establishing and maintaining regular communication with people from other institutions and organizations dealing with the area relevant to the beneficiary;
  • assessment of performance after the completion of the program;
  • monitoring the reintegration of beneficiary in the areas of importance for that person.

Social inclusion of victims

The program of sustainable social inclusion of victims of human trafficking, and other forms of exploitation, aims at full social inclusion and economic empowerment of victims of human trafficking and other forms of exploitation, in the conditions of economic crisis and reduced state intervention. As one of the consequences of the economic crisis is precisely dramatically reduced capacity of the existing systems to provide the process of (re)integration of victims of trafficking and other forms of exploitation through its interventions, especially their sustainable social inclusion and empowerment through full involvement in the education system and the labour market, NGO Atina’s program offers a viable solution to provide comprehensive protection of victims and their families, as well as multiple victims of the transition and crisis. Approach directed parallel to the rehabilitation of the consequences of the situation of trafficking and other forms of exploitation on the one hand, and acting on the causes of entering into a situation of trafficking on the other hand, are an additional quality compared to existing approaches in this area, but also a guarantee of success, longevity and sustainability of the program itself and of the forms of protection.

To understand the phenomenon of human trafficking and the quality of NGO Atina’s programs, it is very important to stress that the right to liberty, the right to dignity and security, the right to a life free of slavery, the right to treat an individual without cruelty and humanely, different economic and social rights and specific rights of children and women, are among the human rights that are denied to victims of human trafficking. If the understanding of these aspects extends with the knowledge of the effect of the crisis and the consequences it is leaving through deepening of the existing marginalization, difficulty in meeting the already narrow spectrum rights; clearly, the need to invest more energy, knowledge and resources in the protection of, and assistance to, this group and their communities exists. One of the most fundamental ways, among other things, is emergency treatment and mediation in realization of the basic rights of young people, women and children victims of human trafficking, through continuous and daily counselling with victims, based on mutual respect, trust and intimacy, communication with the social welfare centres and other relevant institutions, and direct assistance in obtaining the necessary documents. To illustrate this, given the level of deprivation of the victims and their families, NGO Atina on average spends more than 3 months of engagement in providing only the most basic documents to access the social and health care, through direct contact with various institutions throughout the territory of the Republic of Serbia.

Due to the lack of standards for evaluation of existing programs, and the results of research into the reasons why victims refuse various assistance programs, Atina’s basic starting point is - the creation of program activities according to the requirements and needs of each individual victim. In addition, NGO Atina successfully performs all activities of further monitoring and measuring the effects of the inclusion of each individual beneficiary - among other things, professionals from NGO Atina are in constant touch with 90% of former beneficiaries of the program, so the program effects are also measured through their achievements and level of inclusion.

The entire program is designed to empower beneficiaries for independent living, overcoming suffered traumas and violence, and recognition of risk situations. The system for provision of psychological support is specifically developed in this area, and it includes work on self-help groups, when the beneficiaries are interested in it (NGO Atina’s self-help group is recognized as an example of good practice at the international level).

NGO Atina includes the experts from relevant organizations/institutions, with whom it has established cooperation in the past, in the whole monitoring system as well as in the system of evaluation of support programs.