Using Art to Fight Modern Day Slavery

Awareness Against Human Trafficking (HAART) – a Nairobi based NGO – launched a new and exciting project called Arts to End Slavery in May 2015. The purpose of the project is to create awareness on the issue of human trafficking creatively. Human trafficking is the recruitment and transportation of people by using deception, coercion or force for the purpose of exploitation, such as forced labor and sex work. It occurs within a country or internationally. While human trafficking is rampant in Kenya due to poverty, there is a general lack of awareness of the issue. In addition, the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2010 has been poorly implemented and does not offer victims or potential victims’ protection or assistance. HAART has been working on this issue since 2010. Arts to End Slavery is a new approach to spread awareness by using all forms of art as a tool for communication.

This year we are collaborating with PAWA254 in implementing the project. PAWA254 is Kenya’s unique art and cultural collaborative hub through which innovative professionals from diverse fields exploit their creative gifts to foster entrepreneurship and social change. Among the creatives who collaborate in our dynamic space are photographers, graphic artists, filmmakers, journalists, musicians and poets.

The project seeks to collaborate with local professional artist, photographers, musicians, poets and more who will portray human trafficking using their different art forms. The artists will use their skills to create visual representations of human trafficking. This will help in disseminating the information about modern slavery to the public. Through Arts to End Slavery, HAART hopes to create awareness about human trafficking in an exciting way that will engage public participation. After a huge success last year,this year we are proud to announce that Arts to End Slavery 2016 is underway. We will be having two exhibitions in two different locations in Nairobi and we are bringing the art to Kisumu and Mombasa. The theme this year will focus on the experiences of the victims of human trafficking. We will soon post more information about the exhibition as the project progresses!