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Cablegate: Additional Costa Rica Proposal: G/Tip Fy 2008 Esf

VZCZCXYZ0016
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHSJ #0429/01 1431758
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 221758Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY SAN JOSE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9753
INFO RUEHZA/WHA CENTRAL AMERICAN COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS SAN JOSE 000429

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR WHA/CEN AND G/TIP MFORSTROM

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ASEC ELAB PHUM PREL KCRM SMIG CS
SUBJECT: ADDITIONAL COSTA RICA PROPOSAL: G/TIP FY 2008 ESF
AND INCLE FUNDS

REF: A. 07 STATE 161287
B. SAN JOSE 125

1. Per Ref A, Post submits a second Costa Rican proposal for
funding from G/TIP-managed FY 2008 ESF and INCLE funds on
behalf of Rahab Foundation. We understand that the review
committee has not yet convened, and we appreciate the
opportunity for this additional submission. This proposal is
in addition to the IOM proposal that Post submitted in
February (Ref B).

2. Background: This project would extend for two additional
years a Rahab Foundation project that was funded by the U.S.
and operated from 2006-2008 in Jaco, Costa Rica. The beach
town of Jaco is a major epicenter of the Costa Rican sex
tourism industry and trafficking in persons. The first phase
of the Jaco project focused on preventing trafficking through
awareness and training among vulnerable populations,
officials and police, government institutions, NGOs and area
businesses. It also involved a victim's protection and
assistance component, complete with legal, psychological,
medical, dental and reintegration services. The Jaco project
is the only one in Costa Rica to date providing a range of
services specifically to victims of trafficking. The GOCR in
fact relies on Rahab Foundation to assist victims, as there
are no other service providers adequately prepared to do so.
The experience developed through the first phase demonstrated
an urgent need for more active participation of other
community-based organizations concerned about
trafficking-related issues.

3. Backdrop: One of Costa Rica's biggest challenges
continues to be the trafficking of persons for the purposes
of labor and/or sexual exploitation. Costa Rica is a source,
transit and destination country for men, women, and children
trafficked for those purposes. Given the GOCR's resources and
many other challenges, Costa Rica's effort to combat
trafficking in persons needs assistance. The country's
borders are porous and the government resources continue to
be stretched. There is ample evidence that Costa Rica serves
as a transit and destination point for many women heading
north as well as the destination of many women trafficked
from other Central and South American countries, the
Caribbean (Dominican Republic) and Eastern Europe (mainly
Russia and Romania).

4. The responses below are keyed to Ref A. We emailed the
full proposal to G/TIP's Mark Forstrom.

5. Program Description:

A. Name of Organization: Rahab Foundation. Contact person:
Mariliana Morales, Executive Director. Mailing address: P.O.
Box 2161-1002, Paseo de los Estudiantes, San Jose, Costa
Rica. Phone number 011-506-2221-4908. E-mail is
rahabcr@ice.co.cr.

B. Requested Funding Amount is USD 149,394.

C. Project Title: "Strengthening and Improving Community
Service Networks to Fight Human Trafficking in the Central
Pacific Region of Costa Rica: Phase 2".

D. Project Duration: Two years.

E. Proposal Abstract: Since June 2006, the Rahab Foundation,
in coordination with IOM, has carried out the project,
"Prevention, Protection and Services to Human Trafficking
Victims and Potential Victims" in the Central Pacific Region
of Costa Rica. The experience developed through this first
phase has demonstrated the urgent need to complement the
training and political advocacy activities carried out with
local government counterparts to promote a more active
participation of community-based organizations. These
grass-roots organizations, coming together to deal with
religious, women's, and environmental issues, among others,
could act as a frontline of defense of victims of trafficking
from the moment of identification and throughout the medium
and long-term assistance. Therefore, the end objective of
this project is to improve their capacity as local agents for
the identification of human trafficking victims and the
criminal rings as well as provide with practical attention
towards victim protection.

As such, the project will promote community awareness and
support the design and implementation of coordination and
referral mechanisms of a service network that addresses human
trafficking at the local level, promoting ownership and
sustainability after the end of the project. The joint
partnership for the first phase has proven to have good

synergy since Rahab Foundation's know-how focuses on
restoration of human rights of women and teens involved in
sexual exploitation, while IOM has cumulative experience on
human trafficking issues and is well-positioned for political
advocacy both nationally and internationally. The main goal
is to strengthen community and institutional service
networks, with the participation of government institutions,
non-government organizations and civil society, in order to
carry out activities for the prevention, protection and
assistance services to human trafficking victims and
potential victims in a coordinated and effective manner.

6. Post recommends this initiative as truly worthwhile and
one that fills a void in Costa Rica's efforts to combat
trafficking in persons. Without additional funding, the Jaco
project will remain closed.
BRENNAN

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