The United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery- What the Fund is
This year, the Slavery Fund will commemorate its 25th anniversary since its establishment by the General Assembly in 1991. This commemorative year provides a timely platform for renewed and increased support to this mechanism. It is also a stark reminder of the continuous plight of thousands of victims who are in dire need of assistance. Member States should take action to ratify necessary international legal instruments and abide by them to the fullest to facilitate the abolition of slavery. States should also support civil society initiatives in support of victims, while at the same time respecting and protecting their independence.
“The United Nations Slavery Fund provides assistance each year to thousands of people who have experienced some form of slavery. It is a privilege to meet both the people concerned and the organisations that provide the assistance to them, located in every continent of the world. All of them give me the same message: that more assistance is needed. In a world where we believe the actual number of victims in need of our assistance to be in the tens of millions, the assistance provided by the Slavery Fund is only a drop in the ocean, but a very welcome drop to those who benefit”.
Trustee of the Voluntary Trust Fund on
Contemporary Forms of Slavery
The Fund assists individuals, whose human rights have been severely violated as a result of modern slavery. It provides direct humanitarian, legal and financial assistance to victims through grants awarded to non-governmental organisations.
Since its establishment by the General Assembly in 1991 (resolution 46/122), the Slavery Fund has supported more than 400 organizations in 95 countries, providing rehabilitation and assistance to thousands of victims.
Small-sized grants are awarded yearly on a competitive basis, and may be renewed if conditions are met. A call for proposals is issued every year in January.
The Fund is managed by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, with the advice of a Board of Trustees composed of independent experts from the five world regions. The Board meets once a year to determine priorities, review policies and adopt recommendations on grants.
Between June and December, the OHCHR Support Team to the UN Slavery Fund analyses new applications as well as narrative, financial and audit reports on the use of previous grants. It also organizes pre-screening visits to project of new applicants and monitoring visits to the Fund’s grantees.
The recommendations on grants adopted by the Board of Trustees in December are transmitted to the Secretary-General for his approval. As a rule, grants are disbursed in the first months of the following year.
For more information about the Fund download the flyer in E | F | S (PDF).
Download the brochure of the Fund click here (PDF).