RUHAMA - Ireland


Ruhama is a voluntary organization; we work with women affected by prostitution and other forms of commercial sexual exploitation. Our philosophy is the dignity of each person and through our services we help women realize their dignity; - a dignity which may have been lost through women's experiences of sexual objectification and abuse.

We reach out to women by making contact, building relationships and addressing the difficult reality facing women with experiences of prostitution and sex trafficking. We work with women who are involved in street based or off street prostitution, including escort agencies.

Most of the women we meet who are currently involved in prostitution would like to leave the life but don’t know how to or don't have the supports necessary to help them exit. Ruhama provides a range of supports to help women exit and reintegrate into mainstream society.

Click here to visit Ruhama's website

Desiderata - Short film by Ciaran O' Reilly

We have changed our services over the years to address the changing profile of women affected by prostitution. Within the last decade our client group has changed from been predominately Irish to the majority being migrant women. Most of these women were trafficked into prostitution in Ireland but a significant number were trafficked or prostituted into other countries but escaped to Ireland. Now while living here, they have sourced Ruhama for help.

In addition, human trafficking for sexual exploitation is growing. Ruhama made its first contact with a woman who was a victim of sex trafficking in 2000. Over the past decade Ireland has become both a transit route and a destination point for sex trafficking.

The number of women involved is unknown, due to the secretive and highly organized nature of this business, but it is clear that Ireland is included in an international crime web which extends across Eastern Europe, South America and Africa. Most tend to be young women from impoverished backgrounds who are sometimes abducted, but more usually duped, into undertaking the dangerous and illegal journey to Ireland. Often their traffickers are partners or members of their wider family.

Ruhama - TV ad campaign

Ruhama's view is that trafficking for sexual exploitation is a contemporary form of slavery, with a distinctly gendered bias. As with all illegal activities it is well hidden, with the women held in brothels or private premises. They are moved frequently to prevent them from making any meaningful contact with outsiders, which might result in disclosure of their circumstances. To maintain control of their victims the traffickers use systematic violence and threats to their families and personal security.

Trafficking in Ireland short film - Ruhama

(The above information was taken from Ruhama's website)