Many women and children who have been trafficked usually have been promised better lives, well paid work opportunities, or even schooling from their perpetrators. They are told exactly the types of things that they want to hear.
In most cases, the women already know their perpetrators and they are usually someone close to them like a relative, a friend of the family, neighbour or boyfriend.
The victims are usually from the poorest areas and have been looking for ways to improve their situations. By the time the perpetrator approaches them, they are often so desperate that they fall vulnerable to being trafficked.
Although many are removed forcibly from their families or the streets for the purpose of trafficking, many others will go willingly due to their traffickers promise of a better life.
Imagine if you will, you’re a mother of five, 4 boys and 1 girl. You have been struggling for some time now just to pay for the families food, often only being able to provide one basic meal a day. Your children have had to drop out of school as every cent you earn goes towards feeding your children, let alone the costs of sending them to school.
You work a 14 hour day to provide the very little that you do. There seems no way out, you’re desperate, you’re tired and you have no where left to turn. You wonder how you will go on.
A neighbour sees your struggles. That neighbour’s friend offers to take your only daughter to another town to live with them in return for your daughter’s services as a house maid. They promise her schooling and three meals a day in return. You don’t know what to do. You are pressured to think quickly as you are told that there are many other young girls interested. The thought of her having three meals a day and an education seems unbelievable, but you make the decision to let your daughter go. Who knows, maybe she will return home on school break.
Your daughter has now fallen into the hands of a trafficker and is sold to the nearest pimp offering the highest price.
In Cambodia young virgin girls are offered an attractive price for their virginity, so are sold as young as 3 years of age – this is unimaginable and this scenario is just one so common to many Cambodians.
Once a victim has been trafficked their fate is almost certain. There is no escape, they have become their pimp’s most valuable asset.
They learn very quickly that if they try and struggle or resist their clients, that this only leads to more beatings and torture from their pimps.
They are told if they try and escape, that their pimps know where their mothers or sisters live and that they will be next.
Too quickly they learn to accept their fate as resisting only holds more torture and even worse consequences.
After many years of abuse, torture & rape from clients, the women are usually thrown out of brothels as they are no longer providing enough money, or are not an attractive enough commodity. They are thrown out on the street and replaced by more youthful women/children.
The woman are so broken and ashamed and are looking for somewhere to escape to, many don’t know of any other life by this stage.
It is impossible for them to forget what has happened to them, but with love and support, patience and understanding, counselling from professionals, rehabilitation is possible and fulfilling lives are created.
Connecting Hands provides rescue, rehabilitation and reintegration for all women & children that have fell victims to this horrendous crime.
You can help change a life, please make a donation to Connecting Hands and help rebuild and enrich the lives of survivors of sex trafficking.