Over 25,000 women work as prostitutes in the Netherlands, many of whom are from poor countries in Eastern Europe and around the world. Not For Sale is working to provide dignified work for women vulnerable to exploitation in Amsterdam and abroad.

In the Netherlands, Not For Sale brings new opportunities to rebuild the future of survivors through professional culinary training, and provides nutritious meals to women working behind the windows in the city's Red Light District. In doing so, Not For Sale gathers valuable data on vulnerable areas of Eastern Europe, to creates solutions that address the origins of human trafficking for the most affected communities.

Watch the video below to see how it works.

How You Can Help in The Netherlands

On the Ground in The Netherlands

An estimated 70% of women working in prostitution in the Netherlands are foreigners, primarily from Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria and South America.[1] Economic vulnerability, namely a lack of job opportunities in these origin countries is widely recognized as the main reason for exploitation.

The Not For Sale Netherlands, located in the heart of Amsterdam's Red Light District, offers professional skill training in culinary arts and catering to survivors of exploitation rehabilitated in Amsterdam. Women training in the kitchen are trained to make prepare soup that are sold to individual women working in the brothels of the surrounding Red Light District.

During their internships, the women gain valuable jobs and life skills that will lead to dignified employment in their home countries. More importantly, they experience a normal, healthy work environment that offers a sense of equality and empowerment. In 2012, Not For Sale partnered with Juniper Networks to establish the first commercial point of sales for soup in Amsterdam and begin creating further work experience opportunities for survivors of exploitation, selling soup to Juniper Network’s employees.

The catering program becomes visible through the soup kitchen and community space where meals are made for the women by the women and thus displaying the possible employment alternatives to prostitution.

Most significantly, selling soup to women in the Red Light District enables Not For Sale to build credible and lasting relationships that can provide greater visibility into their backgrounds and the factors that contributed to their current situation. This information can be used to create solutions that grow economic opportunities for those most vulnerable communities in Eastern Europe, and ultimately prevent trafficking before it occurs.

[1] Tampep International Foundation, Sex Work in Europe Report (Amsterdam: 2009) 20.


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