Our Mission: Liberating slaves and changing the conditions that allow slavery to persist
Slavery is the result of vulnerability. It flourishes where people cannot meet their basic needs and lack economic opportunity, education, health care, and honest government.
Slaves usually come from the poor, the desperate, the uneducated, the marginalized, and the unprotected. People are forced to work without pay, under threat of violence, and they’re unable to walk away.
Our strategy is to reduce people’s vulnerability, help those in slavery to freedom, and transform the political, economic, cultural, and social circumstances that make slavery possible.
Our Vision: A community-based model for freedom
We help communities chart their own path toward sustainable freedom based on their unique needs and circumstances.
We strengthen the capacity of grassroots organizations, government agencies, advocacy coalitions, and the media to take action. We support vulnerable communities through education, mobilization, and increasing access to education, vocational training, and essential services.
We rescue those in slavery and help them rejoin their families and communities. We record and share success stories so the world can see what both slavery and freedom look like. And we systematically assess our work to ensure accountability and continuously improve our programs. Free the Slaves co-implements all community projects with and through locally-based organizations.
Our History: Anti-slavery pioneers and innovators
Free the Slaves was founded in 2000—and today we are considered a leader and pioneer in the modern abolitionist movement.
We have helped awaken the world to the fact that slavery still exists, why it does, and where it’s worst. We’ve developed a global blueprint for change to inform governments, international institutions, faith communities, businesses, and the public what they can do.
We’re now implementing our community-based strategy in strategically selected countries, demonstrating that our model works and that it is both scalable and replicable. Our groundbreaking research and rigorous evaluation informs our policy advocacy to strengthen anti-slavery laws and rid slavery from manufacturing supply chains and business practices.
Our Impact: Thousands freed from slavery
Our model delivers results. Since our founding in 2000, we have liberated 13,000 people from slavery.
In 2016, Free the Slaves programs produced these results:
- 1,123 people freed from slavery
- 2,625 slaves or survivors receiving support from FTS or our partner organizations
- 189,052 people reached through awareness raising and rights education about how to protect their families from traffickers
- 1,395 villages and neighborhoods supported to protect their communities from slavery
- 955 government officials trained on how to more effectively stop slavery
- 59 traffickers and slaveholders arrested
Our Guiding Principles: Inclusion, transparency, accountability
- All people have the right to be free from any form of slavery and to realize their true potential.
- Sustainable solutions do not unintentionally hurt the very people we’re trying to help.
- Our approach and methods in each unique community are based on accurate research.
- We are committed to building a diverse movement and to seeking guidance from local anti-slavery programs.
- We are nonpartisan and politically independent.
- We are transparent with our finances and programs.
Click here for our 2016-2017 Free the Slaves Information Kit
Click here for our 2015 Free the Slaves Annual Report