Dear praying friend,
Human trafficking never stops, even after an earthquake. In fact, the opposite occurs: the disorder created by natural disasters, the internal displacement of people, and the presence of outsiders and relief organizations create a cover that makes it easier for traffickers to move undetected during the chaos.
An article from The Guardian sheds light on the increased danger that girls in Nepal face from traffickers in the aftermath of the recent earthquake. Traffickers and criminal networks, posing as relief workers, are showing up in the poor rural villages that have been devastated by the quake.
The traffickers promise to offer aid when in reality they are looking for young girls to kidnap and smuggle across the border into India. Once in India, the girls are sold into brothels and become enslaved in the sex trade until they become too sick and are discarded.
“The earthquake will definitely increase the risk of abuse,” said Rashmita Shashtra, a local health worker. “People here are now desperate and will take any chance.” Desperate families in Nepal’s rural villages have always been targeted by traffickers. Now we need to be more vigilant than ever.
It is estimated that 15,000 girls are trafficked each year from these remote communities. She Is Safe works with local partners to rescue girls from being trafficked at the India border and restore them in a safe home. The home experienced some damage, and is under assessment. We also prevent girls from being trafficked by equipping them with income-generating opportunities such as goat-raising. When girls become valuable contributors to their families, the community begins to see that girls are part of the poverty solution. The girls become too valuable to sell. You can read more about our work in Nepal here.
Right now, through our local co-workers, She Is Safe is providing emergency aid such as food, water, and other necessities on the ground in Kathmandu and the surrounding villages. Please consider supporting our Emergency Response efforts in Nepal by clicking the “Donate Now” button below and designating your gift to the Emergency Response Fund.
Praying for Nepal,
President & Founder