The global market of human trafficking is at over $12 billion per year, with over 1.2 million child victims.
Prevention is necessary, but for those already trapped in cycles of abuse and exploitation, rescue efforts are imperative. Operation Rescue is about setting the captives free. Our team works with a trusted network of government officials, police, social workers, and other ministries/organizations, on a case-by-case basis, to assist children in need.
Our hands-on community outreach in Poipet and Phnom Penh allows us the opportunity to hear about and see cases of abuse, exploitation, and trafficking. From there, we are able to collect information and get required officials involved to help in each related case.
The process is complex and can sometimes take months or even years before a child is fully “rescued” and be outside of danger. In many cases, the children cannot return to their homes, due to unsafe situations or persons living in the household. Many times, a parent or family member is the one that initially sold them, so if kinship care options are not safe or available, the child needs to be placed in outside care. Our team works with a network of children’s homes that can facilitate their long-term care, if the child’s family is deemed unsafe. Extreme Love Ministries seeks to keep children in families, if at all possible.
We also have a small, family-style children’s home for children with disabilities that have been trafficked. Kids with disabilities who have been exploited or trafficked and have high trauma backgrounds may have an option to get placed in our house. As well, in 2015, we are making plans to begin another family-style house that will operate in a similar manner to provide long-term care for high trauma trafficking or abuse cases and will be for those children without disabilities but that may have complex situations and need special care.
To find out more about our Operation Justice Children’s Home and Operation Justice Rehabilitation Center click HERE.
To find out more about our partnering children’s homes click HERE.
WHY SOUTHEAST ASIA?
Trafficking originating from East Asia remains the most conspicuous globally, and Asia is estimated to have the most slaves globally.
It is for this reason that our rescue efforts began. Our rescue efforts in SE Asia focus on Cambodian children that are trafficked or are exploited locally or over other international borders for sex, labor, or begging.
Thailand is a primary destination for sexual exploitation in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region, and with proposed changes to laws and border-crossings, sexual exploitation will likely increase in the near future if something is not done to stop it. Our partners in Thailand work with a network of social workers, police, and government officials to rescue and repatriate Cambodian children that have been trafficked into Pattaya, Thailand. Many of these children are working on the streets, selling themselves, or offering sex service to foreigners. Pedophiles target sex tourist destinations where children are readily available and many are begging or selling goods on the streets but may be offering sex, massages, or pornographic pictures to make money to satisfy their handler. There are currently only a handful of organizations that are working to rescue Cambodian children in Thailand, so our partnerships there is essential for the safety and repatriation of these children.
Cambodia is also considered a source, transit, and destination country for human trafficking. One survey concluded that 35% of Cambodia’s 15,000 prostitutes are children under the age of 16, with some as young as 5 years old that are being sold (UNICEF). Many variables, such as: poverty, a rebuilding economy, and the after-effects for the Khmer Rouge make it a target for traffickers and industries that need cheap labor, sex workers, or personal gain. Cambodians are often trafficked into nations such as Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, and China. Our team in Cambodia works with a network of government officials, social workers, and NGOs to work hand-in-hand with our cross border partners, child placement/aftercare, and locally in Poipet and Phnom Penh to assist with children being exploited, trafficked, or sold locally for sex or labor. Most of these children are living in extreme poverty and working on the streets from early in the morning until late in the evening collecting recyclables, scavenging, or begging to collect money for themselves or their families. If they can’t make their daily quota, they are often beat and abused, so will often go to extremes to provide for their family, including selling themselves for sex services or taking pornographic pictures.
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Click here for more specific testimonies and stories of rescue.