At my YMCA, down the hallway on the right, is a series of small, rectangular wallet lockers. Keys, wallets and cell phones get stashed there, as their owners exercise. Occasionally as I pass by, I hear cell phones vibrating metallically in their tiny cells, ringing in the darkness. Seventy cubical cells, stacked wide and tall. Calls in the dark, and no one answers them. Helpless to answer them, I amble on, grinning to myself.
Last week, I finished watching a documentary on human trafficking, following the true story of Lilya, a sixteen year old girl in Estonia. Her story enraged and moved me -- not because human trafficking is a new concept-- but because it illustrated so poignantly how someone can be tricked and sold into sexual slavery. Young and helpless, her calls in the dark went unanswered. Stacked in a row of metallic apartments in Sweden, she was imprisoned.
I can't walk by this need. Her story is but one of millions. Compassion International's fall 2011 magazine estimates that:
- nearly 2 million children are forced into the worldwide sex trade each year
- 800,000 children, women, and men are trafficked across international borders annually
- 50% of human trafficking victims are minors
In this three-part series, I'll end each post with easy, tangible "You can do this today!" ways to fight human trafficking. I hope that excites and encourages you as much as it does me! Plus I have a book give-away for you, and the winner will be announced at the end of the series.
Today's Tangible Ways to Fight Human Trafficking
- Check out International Justice Mission's work (and on facebook) to hear weekly arrests, victories and prayer requests.
- Prayerfully watch the documentary Lilya. Warning: Mature, R-rated. Not recommended for males or anyone under 18.
- Start a Loose Change to Loosen Chains jar.
Book Give-away: Win an autographed copy of Kimberly Rae's book "Stolen Woman..." Winners will be announced at the end of the series, in a few days. Each action enters your name anew.
- Leave a comment here on my site on what you've heard about human trafficking (if any) this year, or
- Pray with me here (on the comments) for strength, resources and energy for the people to fight this, or
- Share this on your facebook page by clicking the "fb" button below (and let me know you did). Let's raise awareness!