Stories

Ending Slavery in Amsterdam, One Cup of Soup at a Time

In 2011, global leaders gathered at the Montara Circle Amsterdam to dialogue and design a solution to stop the trafficking of young girls from impoverished regions of Eastern Europe to Western Europe.

The result of this innovative gathering launched the Not For Sale pilot of a catering program led by long-time front lines activist, NFS Netherlands Coordinator Toos Heemskerk.

The Not For Sale catering program is called “Home”, centering on the idea of “Home” being a safe environment that provides its recipients with the opportunity for a better future. “Home” delivers soups made by survivors to those working in Amsterdam’s red light district.

There are currently 280 windows in the red light district and an estimated 70% of these brothels employ foreign women. The “Home” soup venture will empower those working in prostitution through nutrition, healthcare and community. Meanwhile, Not For Sale Netherlands will gather data on the trends of human trafficking from Eastern Europe in order to strategically inform the organization’s future projects.

Throughout the pilot program, “Home” will offer survivors of exploitation job skill training in culinary arts and catering. By having a community space, “Home” becomes visible, demonstrating that meals are made for the women by the women, thus displaying the possible employment alternatives to prostitution. Eventually Not For Sale will scale our operations to pilot a commercial sales distribution of our soups.

The ultimate aim is to assist women to return to their country of origin with job skills that empower, prevent, and protect them and their families from further exploitation.

Visit the NFS newsfeed for updates on the project in Amsterdam and other Not For Sale social ventures around the globe.

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