World Orphans, through its church partnerships, has attacked child trafficking from the primary two angles of prevention and rescue. In Moldova, we've partnered with New Hope International to work with churches to provide transition homes that take in highly-vulnerable children after they have aged out of government-run institutional orphanages. Basically, our churches get them before the traffickers do. In Cambodia we're working with the IMB to fund educational and skills-development programs through churches so that families can see the current and future value of their young girls instead of selling them. In Thailand, we've partnered with Compassion International to work with their churches to build safe houses for girls rescued from sexual abuse and exploitation. We have similar programs that are owned and run by churches the world over.
Stop Child Trafficking Now (SCTNow) tackles the demand side of child sex trafficking by utilizing special operative teams to target buyers and predators for prosecution and conviction. Our friends at SCTNow have shared some very disturbing reports from Haiti with us over the past couple of days. Suffice-it-to-say, the traffickers are out in force, including organized trafficking rings from places afar. Such gross injustices know no boundaries or borders.
SCTNow is now part of the Haiti Orphan Relief Team (HORT), a multi-agency consortium that is growing daily to help with Haiti's orphan crisis . . . and all the sordid issues associated with it.
To put things in perspective, here's just a few quotes from a couple of recent articles posted on the SCTNow Website. After reading them, please prayerfully consider joining us at www.hatiorphanrelief.org.
Jan 27, 2010
"I really fear that most of the kids you see being picked up on the streets in Haiti right now are going to become restaveks (child slaves) or victims of sexual trafficking."
"A crowd of quake survivors living in tents surrounded a pickup truck and beat up the driver, saying he had for several days been trying to kidnap young girls."
"The situation for Haitian youths was difficult enough before the earthquake. Now, in addition to losing their families, many are under the threat of losing their childhoods as well."
"Traffickers fish in pools of vulnerability, and we've rarely if ever seen one like this."
Jan 20, 2010
"Brace yourself for a new level of horror in Haiti: Vulnerable children and teens sold into slavery and the sex trade."
"Even without the pandemonium unleashed by a 7.0 earthquake, an estimated quarter-million Haitian children are trafficked (into slave labor or the sex trade) within the country each year."
"We were downtown loading up our film crew. There was a little cart with a red umbrella and a man selling cell phones and cigarettes - and a few young girls."
As we celebrate the birth of Jesus, we remember that He was born into poverty under 'shameful' circumstances and then immediately fled to Egypt to escape death. As such, Jesus intimately understands the plight of vulnerable and displaced children around the world today.
I've listed a few special Project Opportunities on my blog here at Abandoned-Orphaned.Com. They include providing homes for abandoned children in China and Ethiopia, rebuilding lives in Rwanda and Sudan, giving backpacks for orphans in Bangladesh and India, rehabilitating former child soldiers in Burma, preventing child trafficking in Thailand and Moldova, and fitting orphaned kids with new shoes in Kenya and Guatemala.
As you purchase Christmas gifts for friends and family, will you please remember the gifts that were presented to our Savior on that first Christmas? Will you please give Him a birthday present by providing a gift of hope to the children that He identifies with so well?
"Whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me." (Matthew 18:5, NIV)
These special project opportunities can be viewed here or by simply scrolling through the prior blog posts below.
With a corrupt government and old Soviet mindsets, Moldova has been dubbed the European capital for human trafficking. Traffickers target vulnerable children - often orphans who have "aged out" of government orphanages - with promises of a better life. Most end up in sexual exploitation and forced labor, while some even have their organs harvested. Many of these children end up trafficked to Turkey where they are kept in slavery. Thankfully, the Church is not staying silent. World Orphans partners in Moldova and Turkey are speaking up against human trafficking and have implemented a successful anti-trafficking campaign. You can join this important initiative by giving towards the annual need of $25,000.
Enter the following code on your check or online memo: MOL-550-AntiTrafficking
MOLDOVA: Vocational Training
Children in the transition homes of our church partners in Moldova can escape exploitation through vocational development programs. For these children, sewing machines and computers can mean a productive life of self sustainability instead of a desperate existence of sexual abuse. Our church partners need to purchase more sewing machines and computers for this important task. You can help them meet this simple need with only $7,500.
Enter the following code on your check or online memo: MOL-543-Vocational
MOLDOVA: Purchasing land for an additional transition home
A key church partner of World Orphans in Moldova has land next to its church building that is for sale. The church wants to purchase it for a second transition home and we would like to help. We need to raise $11,000 to help them make this purchase so that more orphans can be rescued from the clutches of traffickers.
Enter the following code on your check or online memo: MOL-550-Land
MOLDOVA: Summer camp for children from the government orphanages
Traffickers target children aging out of government orphanages. Our church partner has decided to reach out to these vulnerable children by running summer camps for them. The church uses these camps to build relationships and introduce children to Christ. Many of these children have never heard of Jesus in the staunchly atheistic orphanages. Yet, as a result of these camps, many of the kids accept Christ and know that hope - instead of a trap - exists for them once they leave the orphanages. It takes $16,918 to run the camps each year.
Moldova is one of the largest hubs for human trafficking in Europe. Many traffickers target orphans (both boys and girls) that are "aging out" of government-run orphanages. Our partners in Moldova have shared stories where corrupt orphanage officials are even informing traffickers when desirable children are being released from their institutions. Under such a scenario, the traffickers wait curbside in vans as the naïve and vulnerable youth enter a world they are totally unfamiliar with. Other children are simply picked up off of the streets, missed by nobody.
Jesus Saviour Church, led by Pastor Vasile Surdu, is trying to get there first, reaching out to these children during a highly vulnerable time and taking them into transition homes when necessary. In conjunction with World Orphans partner, New Hope International, summer camps are held for street children. World Orphans short-term teams have participated in these camps to help the church build trust and relationships with kids who have often been abused and exploited.
For children who require family-style residential care because of highly risky situations, Jesus Saviour Church places them into their transition home situated on the church property. The home was funded by World Orphans and is one of many transition homes that World Orphans is establishing, through partner indigenous churches, for the vulnerable children of Moldova.
World Orphans still needs to provide Jesus Saviour Church with $1,485 per month for the care of the children and upkeep of the transition home.
Summer Outreach Camps to reach the street children in Moldova cost World Orphans approximately $15,000. We still need this funding for 2010 camps.
MOLDOVA COUNTRY PROFILE:
Number of Single Orphans* (one parent lost): 77,000
Number of Double Orphans* (both parents lost): 3,600
*not including abandoned, sold or trafficked children
Average Income: $460 per person
To give to this project please view our giving options (link below) and write "MOL-543 Home" or "MOL-Camps" in the online memo field or on the memo line of your check: