Estée Lauder Cos. helps launch Somaly Mam Beauty Salon in Cambodia to fight human trafficking

NEW YORK — The Estée Lauder Cos. has announced the opening of the Somaly Mam Beauty Salon, a social enterprise developed in partnership with the anti-trafficking organization The Somaly Mam Foundation.

The full service beauty salon, located in Siem Reap, Cambodia, will cater to tourists and locals while providing survivors of sexual slavery and human trafficking with the education and vocational training needed to achieve socioeconomic independence, the beauty company stated. Leveraging top beauty experts and products from The Estée Lauder Cos.’ prestige brands — such as Bobbi Brown, Bumble and bumble and Clinique — the Somaly Mam Beauty Salon will offer education in such beauty services as hair care, makeup application and nail treatments.

SMF will collaborate with their on-the-ground partner AFESIP Cambodia (French for “Acting for Women in Distressing Situations”) to implement the suite of education and training courses for salon employees.

Since 1996, AFESIP Cambodia has combated sexual slavery in Southeast Asia by rescuing victims of human trafficking and providing recovery and skills training to help foster the economic empowerment of its survivors. AFESIP’s Center for Recovery and Skills Training in Siem Reap offers a beauty-training program and small business management program to equip survivors with the education and tools that can boost their position in the community, remove stigmas and encourage gender equality.

In addition to offering training in various beauty services, the Somaly Mam Beauty Salon will provide coaching in life skills and small business management to help prepare trainees to run their own salons in the future. This basic education and vocational training will enable survivors to generate income to help support themselves and their families, and avoid the vulnerabilities that allow for exploitation and abuse in the sex trade.

Bobbi Brown, Bumble and bumble and Clinique are providing all of the products. The Estée Lauder Cos. will fund the setup and first three years of the salon’s operations. The salon’s goal is to be financially self-sustaining by 2016. The salon project is aimed at establishing a successful model that will be replicated in other geographical areas with high incidences of sexual slavery and programs to aid the victims of exploitation and abuse.

 

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