During the period of June 2-8, 2013 a study trip of Belarus delegation to Bulgaria took place with organizational support of IOM Sofia. The delegation consisted of representatives of NGOs, Vitebsk, Mogilev and Gomel oblast local authorities and IOM.
During the networking trip the participants had a great chance to meet with IOM counterparts in Sofia, dealing with the issues of counter trafficking and illegal migration; a number of meetings were also organized with state and non-state CT actors of Bulgaria: National Commission for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, National Service for Combating THB of the Ministry of the Interior, Migration Directorate of Border Police, Prosecutor`s Office, State Agency for Child Protection of the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, and a number of NGOs such as: Animus Association, A21, Family Planning and Sexual Health Association, Nadja.
Belarus representatives shared their experience of operation in the field of CT in Belarus with their counterparts in Bulgaria, discussed the existing trends and challenges in this field in both countries, set up direct contacts with Bulgarian colleagues and acknowledged themselves with the Bulgarian CT legislation, with experience of social sub-contraction of NGOs and operation of the National Referral Mechanism. The latter was developed in 2010 with involvement of the representatives of all the CT relevant agencies, including GOs and NGOs and with coordination of the NGO “Animus”. This mechanism is currently in the process of formalization to ensure proper and adequate protection and promotion of human rights of trafficked persons.