Tomorrow (July 30th) is marked by the United Nations as the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons.
I am humbled to inform you all that I have recently begun a journey to make whatever little or large impact I can for this cause, having signed on to be on the Board of Directors of Children’s Voice International.
The work that Joe Saunders, our founder, has done to date is inspiring and I am very much looking forward to impacting Joe and CVI’s mission of helping survivors of child trafficking to heal and thrive in society.
I am honored to join Veronica Sommer, Jonathan Fishbeck and Juliette Gomez on this Board, and will dedicate all my might for this cause. I will be seeking help from you all, my friends and well wishers, from time to time and would appreciate any and all help.
Here are some alarming facts as gleaned from the UN’s Blue Heart Campaign for this cause:
- People are trafficked for sexual exploitation, forced labour, forced begging, forced marriage; for selling children and as child soldiers, as well as for removal of organs;
- Women make up 49% and girls 23% of all victims of trafficking;
- Sexual exploitation is the most common form of exploitation (59% share) followed by forced labour (34% share);
- Most victims are trafficked within their countries’ borders – those trafficked abroad are moved to the richest countries.
I was alarmed to note that this issue is quite rampant in the U.S. as well. According to Operation Underground Railroad:
- 40.3 Million people are trafficked worldwide;
- 80% of documented cases of human trafficking in U.S. are sexual exploitation;
- 1 in 4 are children;
- 71% are women and girls;
- 2 million children, the majority of them girls, are sexually exploited in the multi-billion commercial sex industry;
- 800,000 children go missing each year just in the U.S.
We at CVI will strive extremely hard to move the needle on this cause starting with our country, then moving globally.