Combating human trafficking and promoting safe labor migration

The Philippines and Indonesia, both lower income middle countries are receiving significant remittances abroad; one of the leading sources of household income for both countries. According to the World Bank, the Philippines received US$ 32.8 billion, while Indonesia was at US$ 8.66 billion in 2017. The chance to earn more abroad and the hope of a better life entice potential migrant workers to grab these opportunities making them susceptible to all forms of human trafficking, such as forced labor and sexual exploitation; mostly women are affected.

AWO International Southeast Regional Office, in cooperation with eight local partner organizations in the Philippines and Indonesia are implementing projects that address the issues and concerns of potential migrant workers, migrant workers and returning migrant workers through: policy coherence and recommendation, strengthening local stakeholders in implementing laws and regulations, providing direct services, such as support for distressed migrant workers and livelihood opportunities for returning migrant workers that complements countries’ programs; and more importantly, establishing and capacitating community-based organizations (CBOs), acting as link between local governments and vulnerable populations in securing fundamental human rights and freedom.



Humanitarian aid and disaster risk reduction

Indonesia and the Philippines are located on the Ring of Fire, on which roughly 90 percent of the world’s earthquakes occur, making the two archipelagos vulnerable to earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions. Indonesia is highly exposed to tsunamis, the most fatal of which was the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 that killed 165,000 Indonesians. Meanwhile, the Philippines’ location in the Pacific typhoon belt also results to the country being hit by around 20 typhoons a year – with typhoons accounting for the most deaths in the recent decade. Natural disasters cause widespread structural damages to infrastructure and shelter, displacing millions and taking the lives of an average of 1,817 Filipinos and 1,760 Indonesians each year.

AWO International Southeast Asia provides humanitarian assistance during emergencies with the aim of delivering life-saving needs and to ensure the protection of the most vulnerable in affected areas. In recent years, AWO International has responded to major disasters and crises in the Philippines and Indonesia, such as Typhoon Haiyan (2013), Marawi Crisis (2017), and Lombok earthquakes (2018).

Together with local partners, AWO International also works to strengthen the resilience of communities against disasters. For 2019, AWO International is implementing disaster risk reduction (DRR) projects in the Philippines with ECOWEB and CONCERN.

AWO International is a member of ADH (Germany’s Relief Coalition), VENRO (Association of German Development and Humanitarian Aid NGOs), and SOLIDAR (European network of Civil Society Organizations).

Project partners in the Philippines:


Project partners in Indonesia:


Project Partners Humanitarian Aid: