Every day thousands of young women around the world are trafficked into sexual slavery, forced to live in unclean brothels, and striped of their human rights and civil liberties.

 

Many of these women are sold into the trade as a result of poverty; their parents cannot afford to cloth and feed them, or they are told that there are job opportunities in the cities, and are instead taken to a brothel without much hope of an escape. Young girls (some as young as 5) are denied their childhood, an education, and the right to their own bodies.

 

Trying to put an end to human trafficking is not an easy task, because it is such a lucrative business that corrupt governments turn a blind eye to. However, this does not stop Somaly Mam from trying.

 

Somaly Mam (somaly.org)

Somaly Mam (somaly.org)

Somaly Mam, is a survivor of sex-slavery in Cambodia and the founder of the Somaly Mam Foundation (SMF). SMF is an organization whose vision is “a world where women and girls are safe from trafficking and sexual exploitation.” The foundation provides counseling, medical care, and skills training so victims of human trafficking can be independent and economically empowered.

 

 

SMF’s approach to ending human trafficking incorporates three aspects: victim services, survivor empowerment, and advocacy and policy. Victim services focuses on the physical, psychological and social health of victims. Empowering them to feel dignified and independent, and have lives with the freedom to choose.  Survivor empowerment encourages survivors to become a voice of change in their communities by speaking about their experiences and why it needs to be stopped. Advocacy is one of the most important aspects to the goal of SMF. Spreading the word about what is happening all over the world is the only way to fight it. Using mass media, government officials and volunteers, SMF advocates for change and freedom for women who have suffered from human sex trafficking.

 

Spread the word and start a conversation about the Somaly Mam Foundation and human trafficking in the comment section below or tweet at me @whatsthesich.