The border between Nepal and India is 1,000 miles long with just 14 checkpoints along the route. This makes it easy to smuggle over 20,000 women and young girls (mostly aged between 12 and 25) from Nepal to India every year. In recent times, some girls as young as 8 have been rescued from traffickers.
The girls are taken from their homes and communities to work as sex slaves in the brothels of Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi, Siliguri or Kolkata. This is a life of abuse and fear; a life without hope.
The Tactics of the Child Sex Trafficker.
Many of the women and children are from poor, remote areas of Nepal who are struggling to look after their families. They are targeted in several ways:
- Some are abducted from their villages and drugged.
- Others are offered well-paid jobs in the city that could support their entire family.
- Young girls are enticed with promises of marriage by wealthy businessmen, so her family allows her to travel to the city to be wed.
Once in the city, she is taken to a warehouse brothel full of rooms divided only by sheets. She will be auctioned here. The younger she is, the higher the price she will be sold for. Virgins are the most valued; as it is believed that a virgin from Nepal can cure an AIDS victim in India.
This is the start of her ‘new’ life. It is a life full of disease where she stands a high chance of contracting an STD or even AIDS. Murder is common, as is abuse and beatings. To her captors, she is a mere commodity, with a short shelf life.
Just imagine for a moment that this is your life, without dignity, without respect or love, denied even basic health care, sold to the highest bidder and given fewer rights than a pet dog.
It’s horrible to even imagine it for just a minute, so how much worse must it be to live that scenario every single day?
The facts are hard to accept but there are people working tirelessly to not just stop the trade but to prevent it in the first place.
Stop Human Trafficking in its Tracks.
Charities such as 3 Angels set up small checkpoints along the border to intercept traffic and help to stop human trafficking. So far, the 3 Angels’ booths stop an average of 12 girls being trafficked every day. Interception is the most effective form of rescue.
In the three years we’ve been there, we’ve rescued over 4,000 girls – most of whom were rescued before they ever reached the brothels in India.
These girls are counselled and reunited with family wherever possible and when it is safe to do so. Otherwise, they are returned to safe haven, where they face a much brighter future thanks to education, rehabilitation and training programmes. The aim is to teach the women valuable skills that help them lead independent lives.
Making Miracles Happen.
Rescuing a girl from a life of violence and abuse is often not enough. These girls suffer from almost unbearable psychological pain and their bodies bear the scars of their treatment. Some may carry lifelong diseases such as HIV as a permanent reminder of their ordeal.
To make matters worse, her community can often reject her. Her community considers her prospects for marriage have gone and, if she is ill, her family will be unable to support her.
This is where 3 Angels step in, to try and help the girls settle in a different community where nothing is known of their background. Some children will be moved into children’s homes so that they can re-learn the innocence of childhood.
3 Angels rescues the most at-risk boys and girls to educate and change the mindset of a future generation. Education will provide a voice for the future to eradicate this abominable practice.
How You Can Help.
You can rescue a girl from a life of sexual slavery by helping to pay for additional checkpoints along the border; for staff to man the checkpoint; and for greater security measures that will not only increase our chances of catching children and young women before they are smuggled across, but also prevent it from happening in the first place.
Your donation buys the one thing money cannot – HOPE.
Can you afford to give a little hope today?