01 Nov 2018
By: IOM Cyprus

Meet Kim from Vietnam, an inspiring single mother.

Growing up in a small rural village, Kim was living her life with many financial difficulties. In these tough times, Kim takes the decision to look for a better future away from her home country.

Her friends from the village, who have worked in Cyprus, told her that the country offers a good quality of life and that she can find a job. Without a second thought, Kim decided to pack her suitcases and travel to Cyprus to work as a domestic worker.

Her urge to secure a better life for herself and her family led Kim to an agreement for 7,000 USD with a job recruiting agency, which took care of all the necessary documents and was responsible for finding her a job in Cyprus. For the first two years, Kim had to repay the agency for its services.

Life in Cyprus was not easy in the beginning but Kim found a job as a domestic worker. Unfortunately, Kim became a victim of sexual abuse and was recognised by the Cyprus Police as a victim of trafficking.

Six years after her arrival in Cyprus, Kim decided to return to Vietnam to be close to her loved ones and find happiness in her homeland. With the support of the local Caritas organisation, she was referred to the Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration programme (AVRR) of IOM Cyprus through the Ministry of Interior. Kim became a beneficiary of the AVRR programme and the IOM staff with its expertise in assisting vulnerable persons provided Kim with all the necessary counselling and support prior to her departure.

IOM is well placed to protect trafficked migrants with the provision of direct assistance and the primary aim is to protect beneficiaries by promoting sustainable rehabilitation.

Not only did Kim return to Vietnam but she was selected to receive reintegration assistance, as part of the AVRR programme, where she could make a new start by opening a new business.

Her initial plans were to take care of women’s hair as a hairdresser, however, this dream was abandoned due to competition in the region.

Being raised on her mother’s farm, Kim had all the necessary skills for the opening of a pig farm. In partnership with her uncle, Kim set up a pig farm successfully and is currently working towards making a living for her and her family and ensuring more profit for her business in a changing market, which helps her integrate back into her own community.

For Kim, life has now a different meaning.

SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities