Gender stereotypes and discrimination
Violence against migrant women
Women's economic empowerment
Women’s Rights



Comune di Corigliano-Rossano, Comune di Castrovillari, Comune di Terlizzi, Comune di Grottaglie

Objective of the project

We aim to strengthen socio-economic inclusion and respect for the rights of migrant women in situations of exclusion by promoting gender-responsive and culturally sensitive public services

Abstract of the project

In Calabria and Puglia, ActionAid continues its commitment to safeguarding the rights of female agricultural workers. Thanks to the support of Chiesa Valdese, the BRIGHT 2 project is currently in progress, with the objective of improving access to welfare services (including psychosocial support, healthcare, legal assistance, training, and employment guidance) for 100 migrant women working in the southern regions of Italy (specifically Corigliano-Rossano and Castrovillari in Calabria, and Terlizzi and Grottaglie in Puglia). BRIGHT 2 will strengthen the collaboration network established by the European BRIGHT project, ensuring the continued operation of service centers in the Ionian Arc. These centers serve as hubs for collective analysis and response by women and communities to combat labor exploitation in the agricultural sector. Additionally, five community leaders, trained as Intercultural Mediation Technicians, will play a pivotal role in guiding other migrant women in reshaping local public services to better meet gender-specific needs and address cultural differences. This effort is crucial in combating the invisibility of migrant workers and advocating for their rights.

Context analysis

Agriculture is undergoing a period of increasing reliance on foreign female labor, especially in the Southern Italian Ionian region, stretching from Puglia to Calabria. Here, over 40% of agricultural enterprises in the provinces of Taranto, Matera, and Cosenza are concentrated. The number of foreign women residing in these areas totals 12,951 (ISTAT data elaborated by CREA in 2020), with at least 50% employed in agriculture. Additionally, many women work under opaque contractual conditions, remaining unregistered. The instability of their employment contracts, coupled with a lack of social mediation in welfare services and fragile institutional networks, makes these women invisible to authorities and exposes them to violence both within and outside their workplaces. When migrant women move to Italy, they often: (i) receive limited information about the host country, (ii) rely heavily on illegal labor intermediaries in their countries of origin, (iii) endure undignified working conditions, and (iv) are not intercepted by local Italian institutional networks designed to support them.

Corigliano-Rossano, Province of Cosenza, Italy

Castrovillari, Province of Cosenza, Italy

Terlizzi, Metropolitan City of Bari, Italy

Grottaglie, Province of Taranto, Italy

Calabria: Municipalities of Corigliano-Rossano and Castrovillari (CS)

Puglia: Municipality of Grottaglie (TA) and Terlizzi (BA)

Implementation Period

01/03/2023 - 28/02/2024



  • 100 migrant women employed in the agricultural sector
  • 6 agricultural companies
  • 4 administrations
  • 20 local associations
  • 30 public service operators


  • 500 users benefit from the improvement of welfare services in the area
  • 1000 beneficiaries of awareness-raising activities

Project Strategy


  • Social mediation, either in-person or over the phone, managed by the leaders and women of the Women’s Groups.
  • Co-design sessions to identify new needs and ensure continuous updating of the social mediation service, along with local meetings to expand the network of agreements regulating the services, in response to the needs identified during network co-design.
  • Awareness-raising meetings between women and female farmers to improve working conditions on farms.
  • Promotion and dissemination of project outcomes



  • Social mediation services for migrant workers are active and managed by the leaders and Women’s Groups.
  • Social mediation services are continuously adapted to new emerging needs and expanded by involving a greater number of actors from local communities.
  • Local actors are aware of the rights of migrant workers both inside and outside the workplace

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