IOM / Ghana - A database system for child trafficking data collection, analysis, and dissemination
To improve and expand access to child protection services and improve coordination of anti-trafficking efforts in the Central, Volta, and Greater Accra regions, the Child Protection Compact (CPC) partnership in collaboration with the International Organization for Migration sought to establish a database system for child trafficking data collection, analysis, and dissemination.
The CPC is a partnership between Ghana and the United States of America which aims to combat child trafficking in the southern parts of Ghana - Central, Volta, and Greater Accra regions. Internal trafficking of children is of particular concern as Ghanaian boys and girls are subjected to forced labour and prostitution within the country.
Child labour is prevalent in the Volta Region and is growing in the oil-producing Western regions. Ghanaian women and children are recruited and transported to other African countries, the Middle East, Europe, and the United States for forced labour and prostitution.
The IOM has assisted the Government of Ghana in all areas of combating human trafficking since 2002 by providing training to law enforcement officials (including prosecutors and investigators), border guard officials, and judicial authorities. IOM also assisted in the direct rescue, rehabilitation, and reintegration of over 756 children victims of trafficking.
Nonetheless, IOM needed to expand its access to direct assistance in rescue operations involving children, and support rescued children after reuniting with their families or communities to prevent cases of re-trafficking.
With monitoring and evaluation tools, overall interagency coordination was targeted to improve and increase the efficiency of targeting and supporting the victims and vulnerable populations. To strengthen the objective of the CPC and assist the Human Trafficking Secretariat of Ghana (HTS), there was a need to develop and implement a database system for child trafficking data collection, analysis, and dissemination using monitoring and evaluation tools.
The design and development of the database system were contracted to Bewsys by IOM. In satisfying the requirements needed to create the system, the technical team analysed the trends of reporting on human rights data and sought to provide accurate yet anonymous reports on human trafficking to improve the accessibility of such information to government officials.
The system was tailored based on the registration, report generation, case management, and system administration modules of the Bewsys Social Protection MIS. The system was designed to feature the highest standards of data protection and victim confidentiality throughout data collection, sharing, analysis, and reporting. Standard operating procedures and shelters for victims were shared on the database. Updating of content by designated users and search engine optimization to identify documents easily were also considered. In collaborating with the technical team of CTC and ministry officials, a pilot on the database system was conducted to guarantee the functionality and feasibility of the application.
Improving the overall accessibility of human trafficking information to government officials and key stakeholders is a big step in inciting the government to act on improving social protective services in the country. The gruesome experiences of vulnerable populations from human trafficking are best understood with aggregate and accurate data.
With this database system, government officials are empowered to effectively monitor and evaluate human trafficking policies and also providing a quantitative basis for policy design. The system continues to support the government of Ghana, social protection agencies, and other key stakeholders to progress in achieving the sustainable development goals (SDGs), especially good health and wellbeing, eradicating forced labour and modern slavery, ending poverty, and reducing inequalities.