Vulnerability is defined as being capable or susceptible to being wounded or hurt.
Conversations about how to end human trafficking have been going on for years. Do we punish the victims? Do we punish the traffickers? Do we punish the purchasers? Do we make brothels illegal? Do we make prostitution legal? How do we prove the sex wasn’t consensual? Does that matter?
The issue of human trafficking is so complex that these questions barely scratch the surface. The legal, social, economic, physical, and emotional effects of human trafficking truly wreak havoc on each society it is present in.
In societies where there is poverty, natural disasters, corruption, political instability, lack of education, lack of job opportunities, gender discrimination, and oppression human trafficking is able to thrive.
Traffickers feast on these vulnerabilities and use them to force and manipulate people into their despicable business. An example in Nepal is that there are traffickers who will go to villages that have been devastated by the major earthquakes and pose as relief workers! People will fall prey to their tactics simply because of the hope that someone was trying to help meet their basic needs. There is no strategy too ruthless for a trafficker, and no person too valuable to spare.
To begin combating this humanitarian crisis, we have to start at the root. We must come up with solutions that bring healing to the vulnerabilities of every individual society. People who are educated, secure, and able to generate their own income are much less likely to fall victim to the tricks of traffickers.
At Free for Life International we have Community Building projects created intentionally to bring security to at-risk populations. We provide income-generating projects within the fields of tailoring, jewelry production, and agricultural and livestock development.
One of our favorite stories involves a woman who had been trafficked. After her rescue, she returned to her village in rural Nepal. Through Free for Life and our partners, she was provided with a pig to raise. This pig helped her purchase a computer, build a sturdy house, and send her three children to boarding school. This one pig completely changed her economic status, and her life.
These programs are only the beginning, however they create a lasting impact. If an entire village can be changed and transformed, they are no longer a target for traffickers. Providing this safety and security is a significant part of our mission at Free for Life International.
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