I spent some time today reading about the enormity of the human trafficking crisis in South Africa. My heart sank reading the stats, knowing each number has a name, a face, a story.
While the full magnitude of the crisis remains unrealized due to inadequate laws and reporting systems, it’s been documented that South Africa has over 30,000 child prostitutes. That number is staggering and heart-breaking.
Factors such as poverty, unemployment, and HIV/AIDS make individuals more vulnerable to human trafficking. That means the communities we work in are at the highest level of vulnerability.
Like HIV, this is a crisis that cannot be ignored. We have incorporated Traffick Proof, a sex trafficking prevention course, into our training programs. Through it, we equip our students with tools to recognize the signs of trafficking and empower them to take preventative measures, report suspected trafficking, and seek help.
One of our Traffick Proof students sat with her jaw-dropped as she learned some of the signs of being trafficked. “This almost happened to me,” she shared. “I didn’t realize it at the time, but now I know.”
Thank you for standing with us to reach these at-risk communities. We couldn’t do it without you.