This International Women’s Day at The Freedom Hub, we took time to celebrate our success stories so far, as well as think about our vision for the future.

The Freedom Hub already supports 37 women who escaped modern slavery, and is the only charity in Australia focused on rebuilding the lives of victims of modern slavery.

But there’s more to be done.

Thousands of people are living in slavery in Australia right now, the majority of them women.

A staggering 71% of victims of modern slavery in the world are women.

There are very few services available to assist victims, particularly women, who are trying to rebuild their lives after the initial emergency response.

The Freedom Hub’s aim is to keep growing and increasing support to victims all around Australia.

At times, this vision seems overwhelming. But it starts with supporting just one more woman, and then another.

Each woman’s story is important.

Alice moved to Australia for the hope of a better life. She was offered a free plane ticket, free accommodation and the opportunity of Australian residency, as long as she worked for the family who funded her journey.

For 4 years, Alice worked as a housekeeper and nanny for no pay. She was trapped. She couldn’t contact anyone she knew, she was abused, she had no money to escape.

For protection purposes, Alice is not the real name of the victim depicted in this story, but stories like hers are far more common than you’d know in Australia.

These women are faced with many obstacles – including overcoming trauma, limited employment opportunities and language barriers.

Thankfully, The Freedom Hub demonstrates that it is possible to not only rebuild, but thrive, with the right support networks in place.

The women at The Freedom Hub’s Survivor School have an opportunity to develop skills, form connections with other survivors and community members, and reclaim their freedom to live independently in Australia.

As a woman herself, Sally Irwin, founder of The Freedom Hub, has worked hard to support other women in this journey.

The incredible work and ethos of The Freedom Hub is what attracted WomanPower to have their International Women’s Day breakfast event at The Freedom Hub cafe in Sydney. WomanPower is another Australian organisation that works to empower, enable and educate women, with a focus on leadership development and training for Jewish women.

The Freedom Hub’s founder, Sally Irwin, was the guest speaker at the event. The room was filled with many inspiring women working together to support and empower the other women in our community.

Events like this give us hope for the future. Making connections with other organisations that share similar values is a crucial step towards bettering the lives of all women across Australia and the world.

Taking the time to reflect on the work of The Freedom Hub this International Women’s Day has reaffirmed our goals to achieve even more success stories with support from even more individuals and organisations around Australia. We look forward to celebrating again next International Women’s Day!