In 2015, an earthquake with a magnitude 7.8 hit Nepal. More than 8,800 lives were lost, thousands of people were injured, and over 800,000 buildings and monuments were left destroyed or damaged. A bit more than two weeks later, a second earthquake hit resulting in more destruction and casualties, and further crippling an already weakened and suffering population.

The earthquake resulted in thousands being left homeless and in poverty. Subsequently, Kathmandu became a hotspot for human trafficking.

Currently, 34% of the population live in poverty and 25.2% live below national poverty line (Human Development Index 2017).

Sapana, Asha, and Saya's stories of human trafficking and modern slavery 

Three women from our CLAMP project share their experiences of human trafficking and modern slavery.

More stories from our CLAMP project in Nepal

Project impact


Children and young women repatriated from human trafficking and reintegrated into communities.


Children re-enrolled into schooling.


People supporting with livelihoods and training.


Beneficiary Feedback Mechanism groups set up that support the reporting of modern slavery, early marriage, and exploitation.


Volunteer Youth Change Agents to lead our community-based advocacy activities.


Number of orphans and vulnerable children, survivors of violence, people with disabilities and other vulnerable people we have reached and supported.

The problem

A quarter of all Nepalese live below the poverty line (UN Human Development Index). Years of political instability had already restricted Nepal’s economic growth but the 2015 earthquake left millions without homes, livelihoods or schools and threw them into extreme poverty. The earthquake left many people vulnerable, particularly the poor. Nepal became a hotspot for human trafficking and modern slavery, human trafficking increased by 15% after the earthquake (Trafficking in Person Report 2013-15). Many women and girls who go missing go unreported and are never found.

In Nepal, 171,000 people live in modern slavery (Global Slavery Index 2018). Forced labour, bonded labour, sexual exploitation, forced or early marriage, and human trafficking are the most common forms of modern slavery in the Asia pacific region. It is estimated that 44% of Nepalis are vulnerable to modern day slavery (Global Slavery Index 2018).

People end up trapped in modern slavery mostly due to poverty and exclusion, or because of debt, lack of employment opportunities, or lack of legal status.

Our local partner 

Our local partner, Shakti Samuha, is the world’s first organisation founded and run by survivors of trafficking and slavery. It is a Nepalese charity that supports female victims of human trafficking and works to ensure social justice for victims of human trafficking. It has more than twenty years’ experience and has been working in Sindhupalchowk and Nuwakot since 2006. Shakti Samuha is the lead implementing partner, leading the community based part of this project.

Voice of Children works with children living and working on the street and families living in urban slums. It raises awareness of child abuse and provide legal, social and psychological support to children and their families. Voice of Children is the local technical partner on safeguarding and will be leading on child protection and safeguarding activities.

Project objectives

The Community Led Action against Modern slavery and Poverty project (CLAMP) supports the eradication of forced labour, and the ending of modern slavery and human trafficking. The aim of the project is to strengthen community and government mechanisms to tackle modern slavery and support victims of trafficking. Capacity building, empowerment, and child participation are essential parts of the strategy, leading to sustainable, long-term change.

The project focuses on 2 high-risk districts Sindhupalchowk and Nuwakot. Both districts were severely impacted by the earthquakes. This is a new project but over the next three years we will be:

  • Working to ensure children stay in school and complete their education.
  • Supporting young people and families to work their way out of poverty so children and women are at less risk of being trafficked.
  • Providing survivors of slavery and trafficking with support to reintegrate and rebuild their lives.
  • Working with the government and civil society organisations to help develop policies and systems that will protect vulnerable children and women.
  • Advocacy, led by Youth Change Agents (children volunteers) will strengthen community action and unite government and civil society to build strong protection mechanisms, and influence power structures, to bring needs-based policy change.

The project began in April 2018 and will run for 3 years.

​Our activities

Through consultation and surveys, we supported the community and Government in identifying their needs and issues with modern slavery. From this process, 4 strategic approaches were devised to address the problem.


  • Raise community awareness on the importance of education, including for children with disabilities, and the issues of modern slavery.
  • Conduct school orientations, train teachers, and sensitises school management committees and community-based organisations about modern slavery. Work with schools and education department officials to ensure dropout rates are reduced and retention is maintained.
  • Support and coordinate with community-based organisations who play a key role in monitoring and tracking dropouts along with promoting re-enrolment and retention of vulnerable children.


  • Form and strengthen Local Committees to Combat Human Trafficking (LCCHT) in coordination with the government.
  • Build capacities of existing community-based organisations to implement Community Based Protection Mechanisms (CBPM).
  • CBPM - Community-based organisations act as watch dogs, monitoring children out of school and helping to prevent abuse, trafficking, exploitation.
  • Youth are actively encouraged to be involved with CBPM.
  • Implement 'Beneficiary Feedback Mechanisms' committees of teachers, community-based organisations members, and Youth Change Agents (child volunteers) to liaise and coordinate between community members and the government.


  • In partnership with the Government of Nepal, provide immediate shelter support and recovery and rehabilitation services for survivors.
  • Provide individual and family counselling for reintegration and support for livelihood activities and vocational training.


  • Promote 'Youth Change Agents' groups (child volunteer groups) and builds their advocacy capacities.
  • Develop knowledge and skills of government officials and other stakeholders on effective policies and systems for combating modern slavery.
  • Work with the Government of Nepal to establish tracking mechanisms of foreign migration.

​Our donor 

Our donor is The United Kingdom Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. Our project supports the UK Government’s strategy on modern day slavery. DFID has provided funding of £750,000 and we have committed to securing match funding of £250,000 to create a total project budget of £1,000,000. We are seeking match funding for this project so if you are interested in partnering with us, please get in touch.

CLAMP Project Update

UN Sustainability Development Goals

  • SDG's - No Poverty
  • SDG's - Quality Education
  • SDG's - Gender Equality
  • SDG's - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG's - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG's - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions