96,000 children are missing every year in India. I am unsettled so many children from one country could be in dangerous circumstances. Why such a high number in India, and what has led to the development of this underground industry? Human trafficking is a tremendous issue that occurs across the world. It could be in the form of sexual exploitation or child labor, and in multiple settings such as brothels and factories.
Lower income families are more vulnerable to traffickers. Imagine you are a young girl from a low-income family residing in a rural village. Your parents have limited options when it comes to making a living. An uncle with seemingly good intentions comes by and proposes a deal. He says that he will take you to work in a factory in the city. You will make a lot of money, will be provided a place to stay, and two meals a day. He suggests that you can send money home every month. This deal sounds enticing. You leave with the uncle. Slowly, you realize the uncle was not telling the truth. You are regularly assaulted, being paid significantly less then promised, and work almost 18 hours a day. You also have no support from family or friends as the uncle took you far away from them. You are a victim of human trafficking.
When girls have the option to go to school, they develop the knowledge, qualifications, and skill set they need to have more job opportunities. Encouraging girls to stay in school can prevent their parents from being persuaded to send them with a trafficker since they will eventually have better alternatives of earning income. At school, there are also responsible faculty watching over the girls’ safety. They can intervene with parents or anyone else who pose a threat to the girls’ ability to stay in school. By supporting the Kiran Anjali Project, you are helping decrease the number of girls who could potentially be trafficked, and helping rescue those who have fallen victim.
Baale Mane, a residential home located outside of Bangalore, is a Kiran Anjali Project partner program that helps rehabilitate girls who have been victims of human trafficking. Through loving support, the girls heal from the hardships they experienced. The Kiran Anjali Project provides scholarships so they can attend quality English medium schools, and finances a summer English language intensive course so the girls can be more successful in their English-medium schools. Here are some of the girls you are helping through your generous donations:
Faana was abandoned at age 7 by her destitute family. She was found begging at a railway station, and was snatched by traffickers who placed her in a factory. Thankfully she was rescued by an NGO in India that found a safe home for her at Baale Mane. When she first came to Baale Mane, it was not easy; she had multiple traumas and needed much nurturing. Thanks to loving support and a well thought out care plan system, Faana is doing well. Faana is a natural leader. She received funding through Plus2 Scholarship Program to attend beauty school and received her diploma. Faana is now working in the beauty salon on the campus of a multinational technology company. She is a bold and assertive young woman who has been managing herself independently since leaving Baale Mane, and we have no doubt she will be very successful in the future. She regularly visits Baale Mane during her days off, and helps out with the younger girls.
Pavithra was exploited by her family. Pavithra’s parents forced her to work as a rag picker and beg from 6PM-12PM each night. She was expected to bring back 100-150 rupees each day for her family and she would be punished violently if she didn’t achieve that goal. Sadly, she was abandoned at a railway station when she was about 9 years old, surviving for months by begging. In July 2015, Pavithra came to Baale Mane. She was initially craving attention and overeating since she was not used to having an adequate amount of food. While there is still a long way for Pavithra to go, she has made remarkable progress. She has bonded well with her new “sisters” and has flourished in the stability and regular routine Baale Mane provides. She is currently 11 years old, in class 5, and attending a high quality school with a scholarship from the Kiran Anjali Project.
The Kiran Anjali Project addresses India’s human trafficking issue by increasing access to education for children, and our supported students have what they need to prosper when they graduate from our programs. With your continued support, we can help Faana, Pavithra, and children like them stay safe and achieve their goals.