Every adult person is probably knowledgeable to some degree of the existance of slavery in our world. Most are not aware of its extent. Here are some facts: There are 27 million persons in the world who are in slavery. The majority of them are enslaved for the sex trade. Among those who are enslaved for sexual trafficking, 80% are women and half of those are underage females. Each facilitator, or pimp, averages 4.5 people in their group. A significant and growing number of these facilitators are women. Many teens in the U.S are trafficked while they are in middle school or high school The first contacts are usually made through social media, such as Facebook and Twitter This is not a big city problem; four Tennessee counties each reported more than 100 cases within their borders in a 24 month period.
The above are a few of the facts the reader will learn from this book. The first part of the book, before the actual chapters begin introduce the reader to the purpose of the book, the authors of the book and their credentials, a prologue which explains how the authors came to be involved in rescuing trafficked people, and a dedication to those who helped in this cause. In each chapter are personal stories of those who have been saved from sexual slavery.
Chapter one is devoted to the problems in the Asia and Pacific area, in particular to the Philippines where most of the trafficking is done online. Surprisingly, I discovered that the parents, themselves, are often the purveyors of this type of pornography. The economic conditions they face force them into the business as a way of survival. Those who want to help must approach the problem from several different avenues. Helping the economic situation is often part of the solution. The Church of the Nazarene has established one children’s home which can handle up to 20 residential children at a time. The church partners with several other groups to provide the physical, psychological, and social care needed. Maria’s story is told in this chapter. She and her two sisters were rescued in 2016. Maria was ten.
Chapter two discusses a program that the church has founded in South Africa named S-Cape. This program was developed by a woman named Madison Barefield from the U.S who interned in Hawaii then continued her studies in South Africa. There her heart was moved for the plight of those people taken into the sex trafficking business. She began to actively search for ways to help them. Partnering with Business Tech, she learned that 250,000 persons are being victimized in the RSA. Business Tech estimates that of those exploited people only one percent will be able to leave it in their lifetime. That is only 2,500 that may one day be rescued. Madison engaged the help of another woman, Miryam Cherpillod. Together they campaigned and helped the RSA to pass the Trafficking in Persons Act of 2013. S-Cape is centered in Capetown, RSA. Kathryn’s story tells of how she was enticed by another woman to go with her to get a “good job” and how that job led to her enslavement.
Chapter three discusses efforts in Europe to deal with the issue. It was in Europe that the authors first began their work with a Romanian pastor’s wife named Monica Boseff. The three of them worked to begin a Center that would provide a safe refuge for exploited women. Monica traveled all over Europe and North America to spread her message of hope and to raise money for the Center. Her efforts drew the attention of the BBC . The piece they broadcast further helped in her mission. During a visit to Romania, then vice president, Joe Biden gave an award to the Center and to its director for their efforts in stopping the exploitation of women. The story in this chapter is about how a concerned neighbor worked with the Center in Romania to help a young mother and her child escape a husband who was trafficking her.
Chapter four provides many facts about the sex business in San Diego county of California. In that one area there are more than 8,000 victims a year. As many as 110 separate gangs are involved in it. Human trafficking revenue is second only to drug trafficking there because it is highly profitable for the gangs. Jamie Gates, a graduate of Eastern Nazarene College and of the Nazarene Theological Seminary combined his interest in cultural anthropology and his heart for compassionate ministries to found and fund the Center for Justice and Reconciliation at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego. Working with Ami Carpenter of the University of San Diego, he produced a report about the extent and nature of sex trafficking in San Diego and the Tijuana, Mexico region in order to bring awareness of the problem to people who can help make changes. The story of Jessica Kim, a survivor of sex trafficking is told here. She benefitted from a program the CJR provides called Beauty for Ashes, That program helped her earn a college degree. She, in turn, is helping others.
Chapter five takes the reader to middle America and the state of Tennessee. Heather Edwards a young girl who benefitted from the social services of Rutherford county and their residential center for domestic abuse began to look for ways to help more women as she enrolled in a graduate program at Trevecca Nazarene University. She began to work as a resident manger for Rest Stop, a program that attempts to reach the sexually exploited and to provide them a safe haven while they transition to a normal life. Rest Stop is part of the Compassionate Ministries of Hermitage Church of the Nazarene in Nashville. This chapter is loaded with facts about what Rest Stop and the State of Tennessee are doing to stop this horror in our society.
The book ends with suggestions for how the reader can get involved into helping those enslaved and in helping end the trafficking of other humans. The authors suggest organizations the reader could become involved with and provides several web sites. It ends with the telephone number for the National Human Trafficking Hotline 1-888-373-7888. I recommend this book to all who want to be an instrument of change.
If you are interested in obtaining this book, you may contact any Church of the Nazarene. They may have it available for loan. Or, you can go directly to the publisher: The Foundry Publishing Company at https://www.thefoundrypublishing.com Here it is sold as a set with two other missionary books.
I highly recommend asking a church for it. If they don’t have it, most will be willing to purchase the set for others to read.