WHO WE ARE
The Préscha Initiative was founded in 2010 by a group of friends at University who were compelled to take a stand against human trafficking. "Préscha" means "act urgently, with great haste, to advocate for the broken-hearted" in four different languages. This word initially inspired us to advocate for victims.
After running numerous awareness raising events, it became clear that New Zealanders did not know or understand what human trafficking was. International reports at the time stated that education and awareness of human trafficking needed to be prioritised in New Zealand. The Department of State Trafficking in Persons report cited that New Zealand teenagers were susceptible to human trafficking and it became clear that high school students should be taught about human trafficking at school-age.
In mid-2012, the Préscha Initiative launched an education resource on human trafficking for high school students which was trialled in schools in the Bay of Plenty and Waikato. In 2015, this was modified in collaboration with Instant Education Solutions to be NCEA accredited. High school students can now learn about human rights and human trafficking. NCEA Achievement Standard 91040 provides comprehensive and easy to use instructions for teachers on this important subject. Our hope is that all schools in New Zealand will embrace this resource because every New Zealander should know about human rights and human trafficking. Download the resource.
The Préscha Initiative has been instrumental in initiating the first research into labour exploitation taking place in New Zealand. "Worker Exploitation in New Zealand : A Troubling Landscape" was published in December 2016 by Dr Christina Stringer on behalf of the Human Trafficking Research Coalition. The research confirms that worker exploitation and slave-like practices are taking places in many of New Zealand's industries, including horticulture, farming, international students and hospitality. It contains 11 recommendations to the New Zealand Government urging them to act on the findings of the report and initiate a coordinated national response to human trafficking in New Zealand.