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A run-down of our efforts around data and record-keeping

Hello friends,

Data is one of the aspects of Azadi that I think are among the most interesting. I am of course biased, given that it is what I do, but it is surely something that I think we should share more about. This comes amid the honour that we were recently bestowed as we won the Data to Disrupt Trafficking Award in the category of Lived Experience-Led Disruption. We are incredibly grateful and proud of this achievement just one year and a bit into us starting Azadi. Getting recognised for our data approach has been beyond belief and a real stamp of approval for the fact that our approach is innovative and new. So please allow me to take you through our vision with our data system, where we are now, and where we see ourselves heading.

Instead of a case management-based approach to data collection, we have sought systems where survivor leaders can participate actively in the data collection process through various steps of their journey with us. Most case management systems are focused on direct care and not community-based support and membership engagement which is the nature of most of the work that we do.

For that, we needed to create a tool that was participatory since that is at the core of the work that we do, therefore, a lot of the data we collect is through these kinds of activities. As it is, most of the tools on the market are not very participatory. Our tools are very new, as in all developed within the past six months, but we have already implemented tools for survivors to fill case details and for them to self-assess their wellbeing regularly which we will then use for programming, organisational development, and referrals if needed. We also have tools for survivor leaders to fill basic information about themselves as part of their onboarding process. Lastly, a process for them to fil information about their economic justice pathways they foresee for themselves. We seek for the survivor leaders with whom we work to have an active say in the information that exists about them and have agency in the process.

Our tools focus on measurement of impact at two levels: through our trainings/group activities and through membership engagement activities that can sometimes be individualised. For the former, we have a Learning Management System where all our training is stored. Each of our members has a user in this system where they can browse available courses and enroll. For the latter, we are in the process of including a membership portal on our website, where survivors can see all engagements, activities, and training that we have available and enrol in those activities. Just like all these other participatory measures, this portal will be directly linked to our CRM system where the necessary data will be stored and used for reporting. We also want evaluation forms to be stored similarly, and we want to develop our Learning Management System to have online, self-paced training that they can access and complete in their own time. We think this plan is ambitious but if we want a participatory, ethical, agency-driven, and survivor-centred database, we need to make sure that we have the necessary software to allow for that. We think that our approach is truly pushing boundaries of what survivor-centred support can look like and we are absolutely in favour of taking radical steps towards what we believe is a better, more ethical system of data management.

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