Jericho Foundation Social Enterprises Support Survivors of Modern Slavery

Client Support Team

Our Client Support Team

The Jericho Foundation, established in 1993, helps people to become fulfilled, skilled and employed. One of the disadvantaged groups we support is people who have been Survivors  of Modern Slavery.

Modern Slavery appears to be on the increase and it is estimated that there were 13,000 victims in slavery in the UK in 2015. The National Referral Mechanism (NRM) provides these survivors with up to 45 days in a safe house. Their statistics show there were 3,266 individuals who were rescued and referred, a 40% increase from 2014 and 74% higher than 2013.

In the West Midlands there was a 127% increase in NRM referrals from 2014 to 2015, making it the second highest location of potential victims. Fewer than 105 of those enslaved go to the police.

Jericho is currently the only organisation in Birmingham (and possibly the UK) with the experience, expertise and resources to deliver a programme of work experience, training and tailored support, to enable Survivors of Modern Slavery to end their dependency on benefits, secure sustainable employment and become an inclusive and integrated part of their local community.

Survivors of Modern Slavery are generally capable hardworking individuals who have been duped, abused and exploited. Having been rescued and moved to a safe house is only the start of a journey for these survivors.  Men and women who have been trafficked face a number of barriers to becoming successful, productive members of society, including:

  • Inability to claim public benefits when their 45 days in a safe house ends
  • Inability to claim housing benefit
  • Ability to claim only 3 months’ job seekers allowance
  • Lack of skills or qualifications
  • Difficulty in finding paid, sustainable employment
  • Lack of language skills
  • Low self-esteem and lack of confidence
  • Mental health problems including post-traumatic stress, depression and anxiety
  • Dearth of provision of work placement opportunities for disadvantaged groups

Each of these barriers tackled individually would be difficult enough to overcome, but taken together they appear insurmountable.  This results in survivors frequently becoming homeless, ending up destitute and living on the streets.

In turn, this leads to the possibility of them being re-trafficked and/or turning to a life of crime. Frequently a dependency on drugs or alcohol will follow.

However – there is another way. Members of the Jericho Foundation Client Support Team are able to work with these survivors to identify exactly the type of support that they need in order to recover, gain confidence and participate in an appropriate work placement (usually in one of our eight social enterprises).

The Team and Social Enterprise Manager work together to provide a holistic package of on-the-job support, guidance and training to the survivor. When the placement is finished, and the survivor has gained the skills and abilities to return to work, the Jericho staff then help them to find a suitable permanent position – sometimes in one of our Social Enterprises, or with one of our partner organisations.

Having found paid employment, the survivor is also able to secure housing and continue their journey towards being a fulfilled member of society who can contribute to the UK culture and economy.

Read more about Survivor of Modern Slavery, M, who was our recent Social Enterprise Star of the Month.

If you would like more information or would like to support us in our endeavours, please visit this page.

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