In the past several months, your gift helped construct and open a shelter for trafficked girls in Laos.
A long-lasting safe-house is now actively providing recovery and counseling services to girls who are rescued from neighboring Thailand. (*Because of the need for confidentiality and safety, I can only share photos of the building.)
Staffed by well-trained and compassionate caregivers, the shelter is a haven for girls needing support and will equip girls coming out of a horrific experience with the skills needed to find better employment or even start their own small business.
Your gifts will allow these vulnerable girls to stay safely, and with dignity for up to a month. Your donation is helping provide everything they need—a welcome kit, all utilities and food, and specialized care.
During their stay, they will be trained on basic life skills and vital job skills such as sewing, haircutting and even computer technology!
This education is critical in building a girl’s confidence, empowering her to overcome challenges, and in time, step out of the shadows and into a new life. With her new skills, a young girl can find and work for ethical employers, or even begin an income generating activity on her own to stay safe and have a better life.
What I hope is most encouraging to you is that you’re also providing counseling and social support to girls that are particularly traumatized. In addition to receiving job training, giving a girl the opportunity to share her story with a professional and work through her fears is life-changing.
I am so grateful for you! With the construction of this shelter, trafficked girls will know that you’re walking with them through the journey, that they’re cared for and not alone. Thank you!
Ke Sawn is a bright, soft-spoken 12-year-old who has dreams of becoming a doctor someday. But the danger that surrounds her poor village in rural Laos threatens to steal that dream. Ke Sawn is extremely vulnerable, living just a few miles from the border of Thailand where evil traffickers lure children like her into captivity as domestic servants, slave laborers, or victims of Thailand’s seedy sex-tourism industry.
It’s heartbreaking to think of this innocent little girl trapped in those conditions, but it happens all the time in this part of the world.
You gift is protecting a young girl like Ke Sawn from this unspeakable fate and offering her the tools and knowledge to live a safe, productive, abundant life. You are making a lasting difference in the life of a child.
Like many from her village, Ke Sawn’s two oldest brothers went to Thailand to work. She and her younger brother work the family farm with her parents, struggling to grow enough food to survive.
Ke Sawn recently joined World Concern’s youth program where she is learning how to avoid traffickers’ deceptive offers and keep herself safe. She’s also learning valuable job skills, like sewing, that will help her earn income safely and close to home, so she can remain under the watchful eye of her parents.
As the group’s youngest member, she’s using her singing talent to help spread the message to other children in primary and secondary schools about human trafficking. Members of the group often use musical or drama performances to teach other children about the danger of being trafficked.
Because of you, the future looks bright—and safe—for Ke Sawn and many other vulnerable children. Thank you!
Although she had to drop out of school in 5th grade because her family couldn’t afford it, 13-year-old Van is one smart girl. She lives in a village in Laos, just a few miles from Thailand, where young girls are frequently trafficked across the border. But because of you, Van has learned and is applying some very important lessons to her life.
“Don’t go to Thailand, even if someone tells you that you can earn more money there,” she declares adamantly. “Some of my friends have gone there and had very bad experiences.”
And another thing, “Be smart. Don’t do drugs,” she warns.
Van learned these important lessons from her Youth Campaign Group through World Concern’s Child Protection program in Laos. Your gift makes it possible for girls like Van to attend the program.
“Before I joined, I had seen on Thai news the danger of drugs and trafficking that girls my age are facing. It’s really scary,” she said. “But I learned from the trainers – they taught us how to respond when we are in danger. They taught us how to avoid being trafficked. I became more aware of the dangers around me and how to protect myself.”
Van and her friends are intent on helping other girls and boys stay safe in their area by spreading this message far and wide. Their group will help train kids in eight other villages next month.
In addition to these vital lessons in staying safe, Van is learning sewing, basket making, and other job skills which will help her earn enough income safely at home and even pay for school.
Your gift is protecting girls like Van from trafficking. Thank you!
Your gift is helping transform the lives of young girls at risk of trafficking in rural Laos, like 17-year-old Leh. She recently bounded into the village leader’s office, with a handful of money and beaming with pride.
“I sold all of my sticky stick snacks in just an hour!” exclaimed the ecstatic teen. She held up her earnings, which she planned to share with her friends who helped her sell the snacks.
Leh’s village is just a few miles from the border of Thailand. Young girls often disappear after crossing the border into Thailand to look for work. Many are trafficked into Thailand’s insidious sex tourism industry. Others are forced to work for no pay, or other forms of exploitation. Three of Leh’s older siblings have gone to Thailand in search of work. When her father passed away three years ago, she considered doing the same thing so she could help support her disabled mother.
Your gift is helping provide job skills and awareness training for girls like Leh in this region to earn income close to home and stay safe. Leh recently participated in cooking classes at World Concern’s youth center. That’s where she learned how easy it was to prepare sticky sticks. She knew immediately she could start a small business selling the tasty treats.
Leh was determined and started her business with $2 she saved to purchase a sack of flour, sugar, and oil. She brought her first batch of sticky sticks to the school during the students’ break time. She sold the snacks for 10 cents each. In just one hour, she had earned $5—a profit of $3 for an hour of selling.
“Doing this makes me happy,” she said. “I wake up at 5:00 a.m., do my chores, and start cooking at 8:00 a.m.” She’s home by 11 a.m. with the day’s profits in hand.
“Thank you not only for changing my life but also my family’s life,” said Leh. “I am very grateful to the project for guiding me in choosing the right path and for securing my future and making me safe.”
Leh is sharing what she learned with her friends, and is now an active member of the youth campaign in her village that helps raise awareness about human trafficking.
Your gift helped make this possible. Thank you!
Your gifts protect girls near the Thai border in Laos, keeping them safe at home, and safe from traffickers. Because of you, they’re learning about the danger on the other side of the border, and are learning vital skills to stay safe.
The village where Nang lives is just a few miles from the border, making residents highly vulnerable to traffickers. It's not uncommon for men to visit poor villages along the Laos-Thailand border with deceptive offers of high paying jobs in restaurants or coffee shops. But their promises are lies designed to lure the desperately poor into the sex trade.
Nang has a sweet smile and so much potential. But she is at great risk, being at the vulnerable age when most girls quit school to work and help support their families.
“Poor families see only the opportunity, not the danger,” says Olive Orate, World Concern’s country director in Laos. Roughly a third of children from this region end up as sex workers. Many from Nang’s village have gone to Thailand and never returned.
That’s where you come in. With your help, Nang and other young girls in her village are involved in our youth center where they participate in drama workshops that teach them to identify traffickers’ lies. Now, when Nang hears about a job in a coffee shop or restaurant in Thailand, she will know it’s a lie—a trap to lure her across the border and into slavery.
She’s also taking classes to learn skills, like sewing, hairstyling, and jewelry making that enable her to help support her family safely at home. With you as her protector, Nang’s future looks brighter. She and her friends see opportunities right here at home, where they are safe. And with your help, that’s where they’ll stay.
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