It’s funny that God only gave me a few hours to decide. It’s as if the opportunity was tailored to me.
I know you like to make decisions quickly, and then stick with them, Gianna. Have a go at this one.
Yes. Yes I’ll go.
And in about six hours, I’d committed half of my October to traveling to India and learning about human trafficking.
It should be quite exciting! Especially considering I’ve never been out of the country. And considering I’ve got a layover in Paris, and one in Amsterdam. Considering that I’ll be able to make necessary contacts in the event that I pursue an internship.
So many “considerings” are bouncing through my mind. There’s a bit of a rush as I fill out my passport application. I get a tingle when Donna tells me that I’ll need shots. Needles. Fabulous. There’s a quiet prayer when I see the schedule and training and travelling and begin to feel the weariness that will touch my bones and pull my eyes. And yet, it sounds amazing. I’m not alone. Everyone I tell grins and exclaims how exciting it will be. Yeah. Except, we must consider why.
Consider that women and girls are promised jobs – and then work long hours without pay, with abuse. Consider that some are lured romantically, and when they enter that most holy matrimony, they discover that they are not loved, but ripped open. Not nourished but drained. Not cherished but used. Used and trapped. Consider that some are desperate enough for food that they will sell their own sister/daughter. Consider that some aren’t desperate for food, and will still sell… Consider that an estimated 27 million of God’s loved ones are enslaved, and perhaps 14 million – FOURTEEN MILLION – are in India.
My passion to help end trafficking has a very local focus. It started in my school-room, for one. I honestly
didn’t know God would every use my dawdling on facebook, but that is where I initially learned about trafficking. Then my community. I and an amazing team hosted a 5k last year and this year to raise funds – funds we could disperse to American justice and anti-trafficking organizations.
I still want to focus on the U.S. with my abolitionist efforts. Why India, then? And yes, I asked this of myself too. There is much less poverty in U.S. Girls involved in human trafficking here are often abused at a young age, or live with someone who set an example of slavery and domination, or overrun, trampled upon prostitution. Many U.S. girls are kidnapped. Some are regularly stalked and lured. In India, selling or false promises of a job are much more likely. Impoverished girls live on the streets and see others making money there nightly, so they follow suit. So the situations vary a bit between the countries.
But a girl’s heart is the same. A rescued child feels the same shame. A woman taken from trafficking has the same lowly, downtrodden spirit. A girl who’s been abused, kidnapped, overworked or stalked still carries the pain and humiliation that should never have been placed on her shoulders.
That is why. Because I know girls that age – girls who would have been at risk in a larger city, or a poorer family, or even at the right place a moment earlier. Thus, anything I can learn about trafficking will only aide me in educating my own community again and again in how to protect and heal our daughters, sisters and friends.
That is why I am going. I want to learn. It will hurt, I know, but I want to learn everything I can about trafficking, the trafficked ones, and what strategies we can use in this combat. I want to teach. The things I learn cannot stop with me. I want to take them to our community, and take them to the 5k, and to the churches, and wherever else I can. People need to know what goes on before they can raise their hands to stop it. I want to pray. The better I understand what happens in the heart and mind of an abused child, the better I am able to agonize over them when I talk with God.
If, after learning what I’ve shared, you want to know what you can do – please pray. Pray for emotional and spiritual strength. We are learning about a very dark, very sinful practice, and it will not be easy. Pray also for physical stamina and health. And thank you, because prayer is the most important support we can receive.
If you would like to give financially, please message me on facebook or text me.
Thank you so much for reading, for caring, and for your prayers.