It’s 180 years since the passing of the Slavery Abolition Act in 1833, and last night I sat and listened to a gentleman from Nepal talk about his organisation’s efforts to rescue and rehabilitate Nepalese women and girls from a life of sex slavery.
Although for many years I’ve known that trafficking continues to occur all over the world, for some reason, as I sat there in that crowded room, listening to this tiny, articulate man who was having a few computer issues, it suddenly became much more real.
15,000 – 20,000 young women and girls are trafficked from Nepal each year, mostly to brothels in India. They are usually uneducated and poor, and from low caste families who are told that their girls will be going to a better life. They are sold to traffickers for $60 – $500 each. That stunned me. How much is a human life worth? Not very much apparently, and how desperate must those families be, to actually trade their children away?
Apparently once a girl is actually in a brothel, it is very difficult and dangerous to get her out, so that it’s better (obviously) to try and stop the trafficking at the border, or the village, or to educate the families so that trafficking doesn’t occur in the first place.
But what I’ve found so difficult to grasp is the whole idea that people can sell and buy other people. That someone would actually sell someone else, and that a second person would think it was appropriate to purchase another human being. How does a person get to the place where they think it’s OK? Why do they think it’s OK?
The whole idea just leaves me shaking my head. Sometimes when I look at the stuff happening in the world, and see what people do to each other I just don’t quite know where to start to think about helping.
There are many organisations that do help, and do it well. I’m going to stop typing now, and leave a few links. If you’ve taken the time to read this post, thank you. Have a look at the links. Be reminded that we can make the world better, but it will be one small step at a time.