SANGITA’S STORY

“I heard from girls in my village how wonderful the Middle East was. My husband couldn’t stop me. I was going to earn money for our family.”

A MOTHER’S LOVE

From a small community in Nepal, Sangita lived with her loving husband, Guna, and their precious four-year-old daughter, Alpa. The family resided on a tiny patch of land, less than 10,000 square feet. This amount of land is far too small to consider farming, and the community offers few other job opportunities. With no financial options, the concerned parents were unable to put Alpa in school. Like most mothers, Sangita loved her daughter so much that she would do anything to give her the best possible life. It is for this reason that Sangita decided to travel to the Middle East to find work, as many girls from her community had done.

When Sangita told her husband about her decision to find work in the Middle East to support their tight-knit family, he begged her not to leave. Guna had a gut feeling that his wife would be in grave danger if she left. Even with his pleas, Sangita had already made up her mind and began her journey abroad.

In a neighboring village, Sangita met a man and woman who claimed to specialize in helping girls travel to the Middle East. The pair told her how they could help her earn money and create a better life for Alpa. They told her how she would first have to travel to Delhi, India before completing the rest of the journey. They filled her with such hope and encouragement—little did she know that it was all an elaborate scam.

“They told me about the big city and how much I would love it. They filled me with hope and the dream of a perfect, new life for my family.”

When Sangita arrived in Delhi, she was introduced to a man named Rajan Adhikari. At this time, she had no idea that this man was one of the biggest trafficker’s FFLI and our Nepali partner had ever encountered. Adhikari is part of an elaborate trafficking system that claims to be responsible for the trafficking of over a thousand girls from Nepal each year.

Sangita was held with 10 other girls in Delhi, awaiting her travel to Kuwait. She began to realize that this opportunity was not the glamorous one she was promised. Fortunately, during this time period, our partner was informed of Rajan and the girls being captive, and they organized a freedom raid. Thankfully, after 15 days of living at her traffickers’ mercy, Sangita was rescued and able to return home.

“I am furious at all I had to endure, and I am directing that fury towards making a difference for at-risk girls.”

FIGHTING BACK

Once back in Nepal, Sangita was furious about all she endured and decided to make a difference for at-risk girls in Nepal. She contacted our partner organization, explained her story, and chose to press charges against all of her traffickers. Because of her strong will, Sangita was able to assist in finding the location of these criminals, leading to Rajan’s arrest. The fight is not over; however, traffickers like Rajan are often very well connected in the community and are rarely convicted. Still, this major arrest and milestone for Free for Life’s team would not have been possible without Sangita’s strength and passion.

Guna welcomed Sangita home with open arms, overjoyed that his wife was finally safe. Sangita made the choice to stay in her village and begin chicken farming. If the farm is successful, the family hopes to then expand into fish farming to supplement their steady income. Sangita is more motivated than ever to provide Alpa with the life and future she had always desired for her daughter.

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