"Helping to Slave-Proof" Children Overseas

Sponsorships help "slave-proof" vulnerable children overseas

Child sponsorships go hand-in-hand with anti-trafficking efforts

Do you sponsor or have you considered sponsoring a needy child in a country overseas?  Child sponsorship programs provide the basic necessities of food, health care, education, and caring relationships.  It has been found that education in particular is a vital component of  "slave-proofing" vulnerable children.  It is the key to overcoming poverty by providing children with other opportunities so they and their families aren't lured into trafficking situations.  

Caitlin Sakuma, Donor Relations Manager of Childcare Worldwide, a Bellingham based sponsorship ministry, explains her first-hand experience in seeing how a caring sponsorship makes a difference in the life of a child:  "I was recently in Uganda visiting Childcare Worldwide’s programs. While there, I had the opportunity to speak with Justine, a young woman who graduated from our sponsorship program. I asked her what she thought her life would be like if she hadn’t been sponsored.  “I don’t want to think about it,” she said. “It would be miserable – that’s all I can say. I would be living in the village. I don’t know…I would probably be married off by now.”

Thankfully, Justine was sponsored, which allowed her to complete her education. She graduated in 2016 with a diploma in nursing! Today, she runs her own drug store. As she gains more experience she plans to turn it into a full clinic, and wants to specialize in midwifery.  
What a different life, than the one Justine imagined without sponsorship! Childcare Worldwide is headquartered here in Whatcom County, but we work globally in some of the world’s poorest countries to help young people like Justine thrive.

We are not an anti-trafficking organization, but our mission is related. We are in the business of bringing hope to struggling children. If we can bring hope to a child, remove the obstacles that prevent them from succeeding, and empower them with choices for their future, we can prevent the desperate circumstances that lead to trafficking in the first place.  At Childcare Worldwide, we believe every child deserves to know the freedom and hope that only comes from a relationship with Jesus Christ. And we’re committed to ensuring children live in conditions that allow them to thrive and grow in their faith.
Ours is a small role in the anti-trafficking story, but for kids like Justine it makes all the difference. Justine was sponsored when she was just nine years old, still in primary school. 
The patterns of desperation, violence, and abuse that trapped many other young girls in her village never had the chance to take hold in Justine’s life. Because she was in school with her basic needs met, Justine was never at risk of being trafficked the same way they were.

If you would like to join us in our role of preventing the desperate circumstances that can lead to human trafficking, consider 
sponsoring a child today. Justine is empowered and free because of the opportunities provided by her sponsors. But there are many more children waiting for those same opportunities!"

If you're already a sponsor, you may not have realized how that support helps to slave-proof a child.  Isn't it great when your donation helps in multiple ways? 

If you don't yet sponsor a child, you might consider this as a way of getting involved in the anti-trafficking fight.  Check out Childcare WorldwideCompassion InternationalWorld VisionHer Future Coalition, or other reputable organizations that offer opportunities to help vulnerable children.  It's a chance to be a blessing and be blessed at the same time!
SAH

On the Calendar:

What: Betty Be Good Liberty Style Show, benefitting Engedi Refuge
Where: 8126 Birch Bay Square, Blaine, WA
When: Thursday, 9/26/19   5-8 pm
Cost: $20.  Includes $10 boutique credit, valid 9/26 only.  Click here to buy tickets 

What: Engedi Refuge Ministry's STAND AGAINST SLAVERY evening of prayer & worship
When: Sunday, October 20, 2019, 6-8 pm
Where: Northlake Community Church, 1471 E McLeod Rd. Bellingham, WA.  6-8 pm


Trafficking & Homeless or Runaway Youth

Trafficking & Homeless or Runaway Youth

It can be hard to be a young person.

The reasons a young person runs away or otherwise becomes homeless vary widely but whatever they are, it's a sure bet that their circumstances are tough ones to navigate.  Homeless and runaway youth are very vulnerable to being trafficked.  Mirror Ministries, in Kennewick, WA, recently posted this information about this population: 

  • There are 550,000 homeless (lasting longer than a week) young people in the US each year.

  • 380,000 are under 18.

  • 170,000 are ages 18-24

  • 1-3% of all youth in the general population report being sexually abused. 21-42% of homeless youth report being sexually abused.

  • One in three runaways have been forced to perform a sexual act against their will

  • One in three teens on the street will be lured into prostitution within 48 hours of leaving home

  • More than one in three homeless youth engage in survival sex. Of them, 82% trade sex for money, 48% trade sex for food or a place to stay, and 22% trade sex for drugs.

  • Rates of major depression, conduct disorder and PTSD are three times higher among runanway youth

  • 32% of homeless youth have attempted suicide

Let's pray for opportunities for caring adults to speak and show God's love to troubled teens. They need someone to care about them and for them. Someone that won't take advantage of them. Someone that won't exploit them.

Perhaps that person is YOU!
SAH

On the calendar:
What: Freedom Sunday - Join with International Justice Mission and believers around the world to focus on and increase awareness of the issue of slavery.
Where: North County Christ the King Church, 1835 Liberty St., Lynden, WA. 
When: Sunday, 9/22/19, All three services: 9 & 11:00 am and 6:30 pm.

What: Betty Be Good Liberty Style Show, benefitting Engedi Refuge
Where: 8126 Birch Bay Square, Blaine, WA
When: Thursday, 9/26/19   5-8 pm
Cost: $20.  Includes $10 boutique credit, valid 9/26 only.  Click here to buy tickets 

What: Engedi Refuge Ministry's STAND AGAINST SLAVERY evening of prayer & worship
When: Sunday, October 20, 2019, 6-8 pm
Where: Northlake Community Church, 1471 E McLeod Rd. Bellingham, WA.  6-8 pm

You're invited to join in these Whatcom County events!

Upcoming Whatcom County Events:

The school year has started and the calendar is beginning to fill up with local anti-trafficking events as well.  Put them on your calendar now so you don't forget!

What: Freedom Sunday - Join with International Justice Mission and believers around the world to focus on and increase awareness of the issue of slavery.
Where: North County Christ the King Church, 1835 Liberty St., Lynden, WA. 
When: All three services: 9 & 11:00 am and 6:30 pm.


What: Betty Be Good Liberty Style Show
Where:
 8126 Birch Bay Square, Blaine, WA
When: Thursday, 9/26/19   5-8 pm

A recent email from Betty Be Good says: "Betty Be Good presents our second annual fashion show fundraiser LIBERTY IN STYLE to benefit survivors of human trafficking on Thursday, September 26th, 5-8pm at Birch Bay Square. We are thrilled to welcome back emcee Tara Teng to the stage with co-emcee Lynette Morgan from Praise 106.5fm.   

Tickets are on sale now for this incredible evening showcasing the latest collection from Betty Be Good with more than 20 models including our new Betty Girl collection. Full proceeds of the $20 ticket benefits Engedi Refuge and includes a fashion show, live entertainment, light refreshments, and a $10 voucher to spend same day at Betty Be Good.

Help us raise funds to support the recovery of trafficking survivors rebuilding their lives at Engedi Refuge. Get your tickets online or in stores now:

BUY TICKETS CLICK HERE

When you buy your tickets before
 September 10th you'll be entered to win a $100 gift certificate to shop at Betty Be Good.  
We hope to see you there and please feel free to invite friends and family to join in this wonderful cause together!"

1 of 43 Myths & Facts About Sex Trafficked Children

It's always interesting to talk with someone about minor sex trafficking and find out what they believe about the issue.  Although awareness has greatly increased, there are still many misconceptions about sex trafficked children.  Check your knowledge against the following myths & facts from a facebook post by Multnomah County, Oregon Dept. of Community Justice:


"Myth: Sex trafficked individuals were kidnaped, abducted, or taken...just like the movie Taken.

Fact: "...individuals who have experienced sex trafficking have a far more nuanced experience. Sex trafficked individuals are often seduced, coerced, manipulated, tricked or forced into trading sex for some item of value. In Portland, we see this typically looking like a false image of a relationship or the trafficker/pimp posing as a talent agent, and then coercing/manipulating them in to engaging in what society would call prostitution.

Myth: If a youth does not have a trafficker, there is no way for them to be sex trafficked.

Fact: The law clarifies that minors who trade sex for an item of value do not need to have a trafficker for it to be trafficking, the act of trading sex itself as a minor qualifies them as being trafficked.

Myth: Youth who engage in trading sex are criminals; they are just child prostitutes.

Fact: Sexually exploited youth are survivors of commercial sexual exploitation or sex trafficking, and under the law are afforded rights as a victim of a crime.

Myth: Sexually exploited youth have freedom of movement and can escape if they want to.

Fact: Victims of commercial sexual exploitation are often subjected to ongoing physical, sexual, and psychological abuse, threats and intimidation. The trauma bond is a powerful and salient reason for individuals remaining with their exploiter/trafficker/pimp.

Myth: U.S. citizens cannot be victims of sex trafficking.

Fact: Anyone who is coerced into performing a commercial sex act for the benefit or gain of another is a victim of sex trafficking. Victims can be U.S. citizens or non U.S. citizens.

Myth: Sex trafficked individuals who do not cross a border, including state borders, do not qualify for federal victim assistance.

Fact: You do not need to cross a border to qualify as having been sex trafficked. All victims of human trafficking qualify under federal law for victim assistance."

Multnomah County's post wraps up with this description of victims: "Sex trafficking occurs across all gender identities, race and age. We do see that trafficked individuals are not exclusively, but disproportionally occurring with individuals of color, LGBTQ, differently-abled, and those with lower socioeconomic status. While we know trafficking typically begins when someone is young, exploitation does not simply stop when they become an adult".

No child should ever have to experience the horrors of being trafficked for sex.  Let's fight against it with everything we can and in every way we can.
SAH

 

Upcoming events:

Sunday, September 22, 2019: Freedom Sunday at North County Christ the King, 1835 Liberty St., Lynden, WA.  All three services: 9 & 11:00 am and 6:30 pm.

Sunday, October 20, 2019: Engedi Refuge Ministry's Stand Against Slavery at Northlake Community Church, 1471 E McLeod Rd. Bellingham, WA.  6-8 pm