Long-term support for survivors of human trafficking moving from shelter life to independence.

The goal of Life Beyond the Shelter (LIBES) is to help victims of trafficking build resilience as they move from shelter life to independence.

Once victims leave the shelter, they are on their own, coping with multiple tasks and trying to move on with their lives, often in a country foreign to them and with modest language skills. In this phase, shelters and social services strive to continue to provide help, often in the form of outpatient care, but they hardly have the resources to ensure close and comprehensive follow-up.

LIBES contributes to the efforts of local authorities and civil society to help victims of human trafficking integrate in the host countries.

Implemented by five victims support organizations from Belgium, Germany, Italy and Spain, LIBES has been designed to produce and apply real-life solutions:

a long-term intervention kit

To help social workers understand the needs of victims after shelter life and offer a guide to the mainstream services to address them

an independent living skills training curriculum

To offer clients everyday life guidance on topics such as budgeting, household management, self-care, safety, social skills, job and house-hunting, and navigating public administration systems

dedicated telephone help-lines

for clients transitioning to independent living

a buddy program

matching former victims of trafficking who have successfully integrated or local volunteers with clients leaving the shelter;

a transition house

in Antwerp, Belgium, to offer integrated and centralized support.

Our partners

Payoke is one of the three support centres authorized by the Belgian government to assist victims of human trafficking. The program it offers, lasting two to three years, is designed to support the victim from first response to the end of the judicial proceedings. It helps both male and female victims recover and reach full autonomy.

The Antwerp Center for General Welfare Operations (CAW Antwerpen) helps people with their questions and problems related to well-being, whether personal, financial, administrative, legal or material difficulties. It also offers assistance to victims of violence, abuse, exploitation, road accidents and crimes.

At CAW we offer hope to those who lost it. We empower women and men from all walks of life and assist them in accessing their rights. We fight every form of exclusion, striving for equal opportunities and social justice for everyone.

On the Road has been working since 1994 to protect human and civil rights of women, men, and children through a rights-based approach that highlights empowerment, and social inclusion. Based in the regions of Marche, Abruzzo, and Molise it operates in trafficking as well as migrant reception, gender violence, poverty, and international cooperation.

SOLWODI is an international aid organization dedicated to the victims of human trafficking, forced prostitution and domestic violence. SOLWODI offers holistic psychosocial care and advice, safe accommodation, the mediation of legal and medical help as well as support for safe return. It has been active in Germany since 1987, with 19 counseling centers and seven shelters.

Zur Information – Download information leaflet about LIBES in German

Surt is an association for social action that works to make the economic, social and cultural rights of women effective and to eradicate all forms of discrimination on the basis of gender, with a view to achieving a society with effective gender equality.