Friday, January 11, 2013

Human Trafficking Awareness Day

Today I want to take a moment to talk about a difficult topic - something that makes me feel angry, yet driven. I want to take a moment to talk about what I feel is the worst, most heinous crime in our world today.

Did you know that slavery still exists in our world? Did you know that the amount of people that are currently enslaved in the world right now is greater than any other time in history?

Did you know that children as young as three are literally being sold this very second into a life of forced prostitution? Did you know there are hundred of thousands of children currently living in brothels and being sold to dozen of men for sex every night?

It's true.

It's not easy to hear.
It's not easy to accept.
But it's true. 

I could talk about this for a long time because it makes me so upset. I could tell stories of girls that have been rescued from a life of hell. I could provide countless horrifying statistics. But I'm sure if you care enough - you'll choose to educate yourself.

Today is human trafficking awareness day and Compassion International has some of it's own information to provide. Because you see, Compassion has an answer for how to solve this - a big answer. And it's working.

What does Compassion do?
1. It prevents it from happening
2. It intervenes when it does

First of all: Prevention
One of the major reasons why people are forced into human trafficking or become prostitutes is because of poverty.

Too many people that are taken over by the no hope monster feel that they have no other options and their life is worth nothing else. They feel that the only way they can survive and put food on the table is if they sell their body. Or if they can't sell their own - they sell their child's.

Too many people that are poor and hopeless are taken advantage of by people promising them fame and fortune if they come with them to another country to become a model or actress - only to find themselves stuck in a brothel with no way out.

Compassion helps prevent this. By intervening in these children's lives and saving them from poverty they now have hope and their family has hope. They are given the resources to succeed and live happy lives. They don't have to sell their bodies or be sold. They are valued as beautiful children of God.

Second of all: Intervention
If Compassion learns that one of their children has been exploited, they do something about it. They will provide the child with the appropriate medical and psychological treatment and assist the child and his/her family in any way they need. Compassion provides safe houses and legal assistance to the child as well.

Additionally, if you sponsor a child that lives in an area prone to exploitation and abuse, on top of the $38 per month to save a child, you have the option of giving an additional $7 for a total of $45 per month. This additional money goes to the country of your child and their efforts to fight child exploitation and abuse in their country.

So what can I do?
1. Sponsor a child. Some children have little blue symbols on their picture indicating they live in areas prone to exploitation and abuse. If you are as disgusted by this crime as I am, these are great kids to choose from. But the fact is, all of the kids in Compassion's program live in poverty and are therefore at risk. Any child you sponsor you are saving from a life of hell.

2. Donate to the highly vulnerable children's fund. Learn more and donate here.

Human trafficking and the trafficking of children simply should not happen. Together we can end this. It starts with you and me.

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