Posted by: bklunk | April 18, 2007

Let’s Hear It for the NGOs

This is a topic on which there is rarely much good news. So it is heartening to pay some attention to those who are at least doing good work.

Human Trafficking: 2006 report « POLS 51 BLOG

The 2006 Trafficking in Human Persons report came out recently and it is… EXTREMELY. LONG.

I’m not going to lie and tell you I read it. If I read that entire thing, it would have taken me the better part of a month. I skimmed the sections that seemed interesting to me.

The best section I read was section III. Heroes Acting To End Modern-Day Slavery. This section covered 10 individuals who made strides toward ending human trafficking. Most of these heroes are regular people who started programs withs aims of the different aspects of human trafficking.

Briefly, the ten people listed are as follows:

1. Moussa Sow, Director of Future of a Child, Senegal. Mr. Sow works with trafficking victims to keep young girls from sexual exploitation, and helps young boys deal with the trauma they may have suffered at Koranic schools, where they may have been forced into begging.

2. Kristina Misiniene, Founder and Coordinator of Aid to the Victims of Trafficking and Prostitution at Caritas, Lithuania recognized the need for additional human trafficking education, prevention, and support for victims, and has worked tirelessly to spread the anti-trafficking message in Lithuania.

3. Iana Matei, Founder and Coordinator of Reaching Out, Romania has been operating since 1998 and has provided direct assistance to 127 victims of human trafficking. Reaching Out offers a one-year recovery and assistance program that provides victims with shelter, health care, legal aid, and the opportunity to complete their education and to learn new skills that enable them to enter the workforce.

4. Nodira Karimova, Head of the Tashkent Office of IOM and Founder of Istiqbolli Avlod, Uzbekistan has assisted over 300 victims and is operating a shelter for returned trafficking victims.

5. Irene Fernandez, President of Tenaganita, Malaysia has worked on behalf of both mistreated migrant workers and sex trafficking victims in Malaysia for the past several years.

6. Maria Beatriz Paret de Palacio, First Lady of Ecuador has combined her deep concern for the youth of her country with her communication and organizational skills to prevent Ecuadorians from falling victim to human trafficking. She has used her high visibility and position as President of the National Institute for Children and Families (INNFA) to lead a nationwide campaign against trafficking.

7. Kyai Husein Muhammad, Founder and Leader of The Fahmina Institute, Indonesia has helped raise awareness of human trafficking among women and children in rural communities in West Java through an anti-trafficking media campaign, which included the distribution of 22,000 leaflets each week in mosques after Friday prayers, along with outreach to village health clinics and schools.

8. Kari Siddama, Grass Roots Activist and Founder of Bharathi Trust, India has been working extensively with the marginalized Irula (a low caste) tribal communities in Tamil Nadu for more than 12 years. Her work includes freeing bonded laborers, organizing communities into cooperatives, and mainstreaming children into the educational system by providing motivational educational centers.

9. Rahel Gershuni, De Facto Anti-Trafficking Coordinator for the Government of Israel has tirelessly led the Israeli effort to fight sex trafficking.

And last, but certainly not least,

10. Reverend Peter Nguyen Van Hung, Executive Director of VMWBO, Taiwan and his staff have helped over 2,000 Vietnamese escape the horrors of labor and sex exploitation since 2004. Under his leadership, the VMWBO has rescued, sheltered, and rehabilitated victims of both labor and sex trafficking, including Vietnamese domestic workers and brides.

These people are AMAZING. I think Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice says it best:

“[The] report probes even the darkest places, calling to account any country, friend or foe, that is not doing enough to combat human trafficking. Though many complain, the power of shame has stirred many to action and sparked unprecedented reforms. Defeating human trafficking is a great moral calling and we will never subjugate it to the narrow demands of the day.”

–Condoleezza Rice, Secretary of State

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