Safe Migration in Central Asia

Speeches Shim

The Safe Migration in Central Asia activity uses evidence-based practices and cross-border connections to strengthen the mutual accountability and effectiveness of governments, NGOs, and the private sector to prevent trafficking in persons, protect survivors, and promote safe migration, as part of USAID’s Asia-wide suite of counter-trafficking interventions. Safe Migration in Central Asia is a five-year activity implemented by Winrock International in Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

Millions of Central Asians leave their homes each year in search of better job opportunities and with insufficient protection of migrants' rights and safe migration routes, many are at risk of labor and sexual exploitation. These migration outflows, coupled with governments’ attention to the issues of migration and human trafficking, present a window of opportunity to create better systems that support migrants, reduce their vulnerability to labor exploitation, and protect trafficking victims.

Our Work

Safe Migration in Central Asia provides assistance in the following areas:

  • Support governments in the regulation of migration issues and prevention of human trafficking and protection of survivors;
  • Reduce the vulnerability of population to all forms of trafficking in persons;
  • Expand and improve identification and assistance to survivors of human trafficking;
  • Improve prosecution for crimes related to human trafficking (only in the Kyrgyz Republic).

Safe Migration in Central Asia collaborates with local and international organizations, governments, and civil society to connect individual country approaches into cohesive regional strategies to strengthen bilateral and multi-country actions to promote rights-based migration and counter trafficking in persons.

The activity uses the following cross-cutting approaches:

  • Engagement of youth and leadership in planning and implementation of the activity to reduce their vulnerability to trafficking in persons (TIP) and cultivate youth leaders as activists to address human trafficking issues.
  • Adapting to changing environments and evolving priorities and focusing on the highest impact activities through continuous learning with selective and focused interventions.
  • Ensuring sustainability through collaborative implementation with government, civil society, and the private sector, and their ownership of activities.
  • Connecting with and leveraging other programs to achieve the greatest impact through complementarity.
  • Using robust monitoring, evaluation, and learning processes and tools to continuously gauge activity progress and effects through measurable impact.

Achievements of Year 1

  • Organized an online regional conference “COVID-19 and Central Asian Migrants: Challenges and Solutions” for over 100 representatives of NGOs, diaspora groups, and international organizations that helped CSOs to develop useful contacts while providing support to stranded migrants. 
  • Nearly 500 migrants from the Kyrgyz Republic received online legal and psychological consultations through an online chatbot developed in cooperation with the Resource Centre for Elderly Public Association, to help migrants affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown. 
  • Participated in the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons on July 30 and the two regional 100 Days Against Trafficking in Persons (July 30-October 30) campaigns engaging youth from all 7 regions and two major cities in the Kyrgyz Republic raising their awareness about TIP issues.
  • Reached more than 55,000 persons through dissemination of awareness raising videos produced in Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan. The videos were promoted on social media and TV channels, and on monitors at border points and airports.
  • At least 250 migrants stranded at the Kazakh-Uzbek border received humanitarian aid through the NGO “Sana Sezim” as part of a small-scale grant program launched by the Safe Migration activity.
  • Distributed 5,000 masks at border areas in Kazakhstan imprinted with the national trafficking-prevention hotline number raising awareness of people about hotline numbers that provides support to survivors of human trafficking.  

*The Safe Migration in Central Asia activity has revised the activity strategy and will not continue implementation in Tajikistan. We will update this fact sheet if the status changes.


USAID Contacts                                                                   

Inna Biryukova, Project Management Specialist

USAID/Central Asia

41 Kazibek Bi Street

050010 Almaty, Kazakhstan

Activity Contact

Eleanor Valentine, Chief of Party

Winrock International

100 Nazarbayev Ave.

050000 Almaty, Kazakhstan

Last updated: March 03, 2021

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