A “hotspot” refers to a geographic area known to have a high incidence of modern slavery, and which meets criteria designed to ensure that interventions are likely to result in a measurable reduction in slavery within five years of the Freedom Fund’s engagement in that region.
We invest in a range of community-based organisations in hotspots to support them to protect those at risk of slavery, liberate and rehabilitate those enslaved and prosecute those responsible. Our interventions are informed by the needs and expertise of our local partners.
We believe our hotspot model is the most effective way to fight slavery and provides exceptional value for money. Our model is based on six principles.
- Concentrate resources: Many attempts to solve human rights challenges fail because philanthropic resources are spread too thinly. We focus our efforts on a small number of slavery hotspots, investing in a range of interventions that reinforce each other to achieve outsized impact.
- Help frontline organisations lead the fight: Grassroots organisations know what it takes to end slavery in their communities, but too often they are overlooked by funders. We back frontline NGOs with the funding and support they need to protect the most vulnerable.
- Build powerful coalitions: No single organisation can end slavery. We support clusters of NGOs in each hotspot and help them work together, learn from each other, and advocate to government and business for stronger action against slavery.
- Invest in organisations, not just projects: Frontline organisations need time and money to develop. We ring-fence a proportion of our funding for this, and provide a range of training opportunities, a practice that is made cost-effective by our clustering approach.
- Prioritise data and research: The anti-slavery sector lacks good data. We place great emphasis on data collection by our partners, and bring in independent research institutions to evaluate what is working. We document how impact has been achieved so that successes can be applied on a broader scale around the world.
- Amplify frontline voices on the global stage: The voices of frontline organisations are too rarely heard on the global stage. We help our partners participate in international policy fora and represent their views in our own contributions to global debates. We connect them to other NGOs, experts and funders, and expose them to antislavery practices in different settings to help them improve their programs.