Who Profits? Orphanage Tourism and Trafficking in Asia—Australia’s Role

Hope and Homes for Children


The second in a series of webinars for anyone looking to make a positive impact by delivering or advocating for child care reform in Asia.

About this Event

Hope and Homes for Children presents ‘Institutionalised Children in Asia: Covid-19 and Beyond’; a new series of free webinars focusing on care reform within Asia. Designed for practitioners, policy makers, donors or children and adults affected by institutional care, these webinars will explore how we can make a hugely positive impact in the region for children without, or at risk of being without, parental care.

These free sessions are a timely follow-up to the recent Institutionalised Children Explorations and Beyond (ICEB) international academic journal, which highlighted some of the key elements, challenges and opportunities relating to alternative care for children in Asia.

Webinar 02. Who Profits? Orphanage Tourism and Trafficking in Asia—Australia’s Role

Orphanages harness the goodwill of volunteers, visitors and donors to generate funding. However, in recent years, evidence has emerged that in some cases children are being recruited or trafficked into orphanages in order to generate profit from this goodwill. This is known as the ‘orphanage industry’, and the recruitment of children into orphanages for the purpose of profit and exploitation is ‘orphanage trafficking’.

Australia is reported to be the largest funder of residential care for children in South East Asia. In 2017, Australia became the first government in the world to consider orphanage trafficking as a form of modern slavery.

In this second free webinar, Dr Kate E. van Doore and Rebecca Nhep explore the evolution of the recognition of orphanage trafficking broadly, and then focus on recommendations made by the Australian government following the release of its 2017 ‘Hidden in Plain Sight’ report. We will consider what can be done in the current circumstances, and how we can support governments in ensuring funding and finances are appropriately directed away from orphanages and into burgeoning care reform in Asia.