So far, we have been able to engage with and provide support to 87 clients, 68 of whom have left the project already (hence, improvements could only have been measured for clients who have left the programme). These clients received holistic support with issues such as access to welfare and housing, immigration, wellbeing and counselling support, as well as liaison with external organisations such as the council regarding correspondence. 
Additionally, we have also supported clients who were being exploited at work to write grievance letters.  Emergency support has been provided during the pandemic, which included starting English language classes in response to other services closing, as well as material support, such as food vouchers and connectivity equipment, as well as internet access. 
Through the project, we have so far been able to support 51 clients to improve their financial situation, and 47 clients to improve their control of their life. We have also been able to support clients to improve their wellbeing and confidence. 

The Project was reported on by the Sunderland Echo on 18th September 2019, see:  Sunderland Echo Back in Control

You can scroll down for the posters of the project in other languages.

Suffering from workplace exploitation? We can help!
Unsure what modern slavery is? We can explain!


In June 2019, ICOS started a project named “Back in Control” in order to identify instances of modern slavery and workplace exploitation in the Sunderland area and empower former victims to regain control of their lives. We also raise awareness of modern slavery and workplace exploitation among local organisations through seminars and outreach initiatives.

The project aims to:

  • Identify victims of modern-day slavery and take appropriate steps to end exploitative situations.
  • Individually support former victims of modern-day slavery, enabling them to become resilient and regain control of their lives.
  •  Provide former victims with improved access to employment opportunities.
  •  Improve the financial prospects for former victims.
  • Provide local organisations with the tools and knowledge to recognise workplace exploitation and modern slavery.
  •  Recruit and train new volunteers.

For more information see: Back-in-Control-Project-PowerPoint-Click to Download

You can also visit our Facebook Page at and send messages to us at

We are keen to link with local organisations to ensure that Back in Control Project reaches the people who need it most. We need you to identify people you are working with who have suffered from modern slavery, workplace exploitation and need a helping hand. Refer them to us and we will do the rest.

Please download the referral form as a pdf document to your computer by Clicking Here

Please complete this referral form with the person being referred.

GDPR Note: We collect the minimum amount of data we need, follow GDPR’s rules regarding how to store personal data and honour the rights of the individual. 

Please email your scanned completed referral form (as an attachment) to or post to 14 Foyle Street, Sunderland, SR1 1LE


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