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The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education

by The Freedom Story (Formerly The SOLD Project)
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
The Freedom Story: Prevention Through Education
Two of our youth leaders leading ice breakers
Two of our youth leaders leading ice breakers

Dear Friends,

 

Because of you, this quarter we taught 1,061 people in Chiang Rai province about their rights, human trafficking, and child protection. Children who have experienced family violence or abuse are much more likely to be trafficked. Within the communities we work in, villagers often do not know that abuse is illegal, or how it contributes to their child’s risk.

Last month, we did a training on child protection in a remote village that is part of a program with Compassion International. During the training we provided examples of child abuse in Thailand, and two staff acted in a skit about child protection with two of our youth leaders.

After the training, a grandmother approached our staff. A member of an ethnic minority group that faces considerable stigma and discrimination, she cried while sharing a story of physical and verbal child abuse that happened in her family. She takes care of three of her grandchildren after their parents separated, and struggles to know how to discipline or protect them.

After the training she shared “I understand more- thank you so much for sharing this information and teaching me. Children have changed so much, and you cannot take care of them like in the past, we have to find new ways to raising our children” Our staff referred this case to the Compassion staff and asked them to follow up and support the family more closely.

Our staff recently followed up with the Compassion staff to ask how the community is doing. They reported multiple families in the village have stopped using physical violence as punishment within their families.

Because of you, we were able to provide this training and support to this remote, vulnerable community. Because of you these families have better knwoledge of their rights, and are changing their behavior, and their students have a lower risk of trafficking. With your continued support we can reach more people in Chiang Rai and provide opportunity and choice for more communities.

Thank you for continuing to protect children and prevent trafficking with us!

With Hope,

The Freedom Story Team

The training was attended by 89 community members
The training was attended by 89 community members
Real examples helped people connect to the issue
Real examples helped people connect to the issue

Dear Friends,

We would like to share with you a story of one of our students, Kannika, who joined The Freedom Story’s scholarship program when she was 15. Her father had passed away and her remaining family of six were surviving on just 10$ a day. She is also a member of an ethnic minority group, making her much more vulnerable to exploitation and trafficking due to her lack of rights and lower social status.

When Kannika was in high school she moved into a Christian dormitory because it was closer to her school and she had been fighting with her mom constantly. As time went on, she began exhibiting symptoms of depression. She was regularly feeling exhausted and stressed so she began coming to see Khae, The Freedom Story’s on staff counselor. Khae accompanied Kannika to visit a doctor who diagnosed her with clinical depression and prescribed her medicine.

When Kannika was about to graduate high school she shared with Khae that she was stressed about her decision of what to do next. None of her friends were continuing their education and her Mother had told her that the family had no money to support her and wanted her to find a job.

Kannika is very gifted in her language abilities and speaks English and Mandarin well. Khae explained this would benefit her tremendously and give her many opportunities in the future if she continued her education. After three counseling sessions with Khae, Kannika ultimately decided she would continue her education in International English at a university in Chang Rai.

Kannika’s depression has improved significantly as she regularly comes to the Resource Center to spend time with Khae and the other Freedom Story staff. She also joins in on the counseling activities whenever they are offered. The Freedom Story Staff will continue to support and guide Kannika as she transitions into University. 

With your support we are able to continue helping those such as Kannika!

With hope and gratitude,

The Freedom Story Team

* Name has been changed and photo is not representative of the story subject to protectidentity.

Dear Friends, 

With your support, our students wrote and produced a short play for the community on labour trafficking and safe migration. One trend we see in our community is people seeking opportunities to work abroad in order to make money to support their families. These opportunities also present potential risks.

The group of teen leaders performed the play for two different groups in the local area, reaching over 120 people. Staff provided training and information on the topic, but the play was entirely directed and organized by the students. Opportunities like these help students learn how to work in a group, increases confidence, and develop leadership skills. By presenting knowledge in a easily understood way, community members can learn about trafficking easier.

“These are good opportunities for the students to  explain their opinions, for adults to see that the students’ voices are important, that their children have a lot of potential, and to help them understand each other more,” explains Kru Ball, the Activity and Scholarship manager. 

Thank you for your continued support! 

With hope and gratitude,

The Freedom Story Team

Family Camp
Family Camp

Dear Friends,

Thanks to your support, we ran a family camp for 7 families in December and had many moms parenting alone in attendance. For one of the women, Meeyu,* an Akha (hilltribe) minority, it was an entirely new opportunity. Meeyu bears the heavy responsibility of caring for 8 family members in her house. Lacking education herself, she doesn’t ask her children to help around the house because she wants them to prioritize studying. But between working and taking care of 8 people, she feels tired, stressed and this causes frayed relationships in the home. 

After the camp, she expressed appreciation for  the new ways she learned to communicate her feelings and needs, and will start doing this more often. Meeyu recognizes now how caring for her own needs is important for the whole family, and how asking the children to help with chores equips them with essential life skills.

Strong and healthy family relationships set students up to succeed and decreases the risk of trafficking.

Because of your support we are able to help more families like Meeyu. Thank you!

With hope and gratitude,

The Freedom Story Team

Volunteer Camp
Volunteer Camp

Dear Friends,

Volunteering has so many benefits for individuals, and communities. It broadens world views, builds relationships, can help with self-esteem and other positive impacts on mental health and well-being. It should be no surprise then, that we want to encourage a spirit of volunteering among our students. This year, we held a two day ‘volunteer camp’ for students in a village outside of the city.

Staff were worried that it might be hard to run the camp there. “The Freedom Story is one of the first organizations to go into this village because they’ve stopped accepting other organization’s programming there. But an old staff member of ours lives there, so through our connections, we were able to build relationships and trust,” explains Ball, our Activity and Scholarship Manager.

Thirty-three students aged 13-21 took the time to give back to their community. The staff mixed the students from The Freedom Story with students from the village, then organized them into groups, making sure the groups had a wide range of ages, from age 9 through university.

Older students and staff were then asked to lead different groups. They did various volunteering activities together, like planting trees.

The biggest highlight, however, was when students from The Freedom Story taught the students from the village about human trafficking, using knowledge they’ve gained through The Freedom Story’s prevention programs. Because it was kids teaching kids, friends teaching friends, rather than staff teaching students, it had dual benefits for those teaching and those learning, Ball says.

Many children in this village don’t go to school, and they have struggles similar to those of students at The Freedom Story. “It was very appropriate for the students. Whether it dealt with the potential dangers of working abroad, or with other kinds of trafficking” Ball explains. The students together put on skits about human trafficking for parents and guardians in the evening.

“The village leaders said they learned so much, and the kids learned a lot also. They said they hadn’t learned about human trafficking in the past, how many different things it could look like… they were more than thankful that we went there,” Ball says.

When asked about the highlight of the trip, Ball responded, “The important thing that we saw was the potential of the students that we are building up, and the leaders that we brought out there.”

Camps like our volunteer camp help increase skills, give new experiences, and help students gain leadership skills and experience.

Your support has helped make this kind of camp possible. Thank you.

With Hope,

The Freedom Story Team

Volunteer Camp
Volunteer Camp
 

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Organization Information

The Freedom Story (Formerly The SOLD Project)

Location: Oakland, CA - USA
Website:
Project Leader:
Rachel Goble
A. Muang Chiang Rai, Thailand
$147,978 raised of $200,000 goal
 
2,281 donations
$52,022 to go
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