Project information

WATER Project

Our WATER Project is a 24/7 safe-house for women victims of human trafficking and in particular sexual exploitation.

We offer women access to medical care, counselling, legal advice and support to regain their dignity and self-esteem so that they can make an informed decision about their future.

This project is on-going

Charity information: Unseen

Unseen logo
  • Need


    Human trafficking is an increasing problem in the UK. In 2011, 946 victims were identified and provisional figures for 2012 indicate a 25% increase to 1186.

    There are not enough bed spaces to accommodate victims, and not enough specialist training for frontline staff so they can identify victims.


    We hold a contract from the Salvation Army to provide specialist support services to women who've become victims of human trafficking. We are the only 24/7 safe-house in the South West of England and can support around 35 each year.

    We also design bespoke training programmes for frontline staff, such as police and healthcare workers, and use our expertise to bring all agencies involved with human trafficking together to tackle the problem holistically.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To give victims of human trafficking the safety, hope and choice they need and deserve.


    » To provide 24/7 support for victims of human trafficking.
    » To provide access to health care, legal advice, counselling and therapeutic activities.
    » To work on a one-to-one basis with each survivor, to help rebuild their self-esteem and confidence so they can decide their future.

    100% of survivors to report increased feelings of safety and all to be offered access to health care, legal advice and counselling.

    Aim 2

    To train frontline staff to spot the signs of trafficking and identify potential victims.


    » To deliver training to staff, such as health workers and police, who may come into contact with survivors.
    » To design tailor-made procedures and protocols so that there is a joined-up response by all agencies involved with trafficking victims.

    At least 50 staff to be trained each year.

    Aim 3

    To work collaboratively to share information and design joined-up responses, in the UK and globally.


    » We've set up an Anti-Trafficking Partnership in the South West to bring all agencies together, including local government, police and NGOs.
    » To push for the 81 recommendations made in the Centre for Social Justice's 2012 report into modern slavery in the UK on how to tackle it effectively.
    » To chair the Home Office's Joint Strategy Group on Human Trafficking and play an active role in how the UK responds to all forms of modern slavery.

    To successfully organise an Anti-Trafficking Partnership conference in June and train 100 people, involving 22 agencies, who come into contact with trafficking victims.

  • Impact


    Offer more victims of trafficking the safety, hope and choice they deserve.

    Increase our provision in future to include child victims.

    Share our successes (and failures) so that we can all learn from each other.

    More frontline staff trained, more victims identified and more victims able to receive the support they need.

    Working with government and NGOs to build a better picture of UK trafficking and design effective responses to preventing and tackling it.


    The current economic climate means less funding is available, plus cuts in government funding are also a threat. We have worked hard at creating a diverse funding stream and hope this will stand us in good stead over the coming 5 years.


    We have a quarterly newsletter that goes out to donors, and people who have joined our Room Sponsorship Programme receive an additional 6-monthly update on how they're making a difference.

    We also have a Facebook page ( and regularly tweet:

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £349,913

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £227,633 Staffing & training 3 full-time staff, 8 part-time staff, specialist training
      £23,520 House maintenance On-going costs including maintenance and insurance
      £20,500 Utilities & food Including heating, telephone, food, provisions
      £53,500 Office & delivery Including overheads, computer equipment and travel
      £24,760 Residents costs Activity funds, resident allowances, interpreters

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Tudor Trust £30,000 Guaranteed
    Comic Relief £30,000 Guaranteed
    Sir Halley Stewart Trust £30,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Our WATER project is in the South West.


    Our 24/7 WATER Project currently supports women victims of human trafficking. They can be from anywhere in the world - around 50% are currently from the EU, with the rest being from Africa and Asia.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We are the only charity in the South West offering a 24/7 support service. We have extensive knowledge of trafficking and have close links with the police, social services and local government, providing assessments and advise on adult victims as well as children. We are a contractor for the Salvation Army to carry out our service provision and regularly feed into government reports.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Andrew Wallis

    As founder and Chief Executive, Andrew is well respected in the trafficking arena.

If I needed help, the house was always there for me. I would like to say thank you to everyone. All of you, thanks for keeping me with you.