TOGETHER WE CAN STOP TRAFFICKING
Trafficking is the fastest growing crime in the world. It shatters the lives of 1.2 million children every year, along with their families. But there are effective ways to stop this evil trade in its tracks.
MODERN-DAY SLAVERY MUST END.
Nazeeb was 14 when the men knocked on the door of his home. They offered Nazeeb a job for 6,000 Rupees (£60) a month. He had just left school to provide for his family. This was exactly the break he had been hoping for. There was one catch: he would have to go with the men to work in Punjab. But, his mother was told there would be food and lodgings. And he would be able to send money home every month. Once Nazeeb reached Punjab the reality was very different. He worked 21 hours a day in a zip factory with 11 other workers. They were locked in all week and had to sleep inside the cramped factory at night. Worst of all, they weren’t paid – Nazeeb was the victim of traffickers and was now a slave. The one day they weren’t locked into the factory – Sunday – the 12 of them were locked out and were homeless. Nazeeb grew weak and then ill. The factory manager refused to take him to hospital. Finally he managed to borrow the train fare home from someone he met in Punjab and fled.
Neither Nazeeb nor his family had heard of trafficking before and so they were deceived by the men when they came calling. Nazeeb got home safely. Thanks to a loan from Tearfund, he helps his family raise chickens. The whole family now gets to eat regularly.
The traffickers returned and demanded Nazeeb back. Thanks to the EHA, Nazeeb’s mother knows all about trafficking now and is spreading the word to others too. Needless to say, she sent the men packing.
*If you would like to see Nazeeb’s story again borrow the DVD from John.
Father, we thank you for the work of Tearfund and its partners and Christians across the world doing what they can to protect children from traffickers. Thank you for the way you are restoring and strengthening Nazeeb’s family, giving them the means to break free from poverty. We pray that through this they may come to know you as their Lord and Saviour.
We pray for the church in India, a minority, serving you in practical ways. We lift up to you Dennyson, the staff at EHA and others who are working in difficult places across the world. Please give them the energy, passion and resources they need. May they know and show your comfort as they walk in the darkest places.
We pray for vulnerable children across the world, at risk not just from trafficking but from disease and disasters. Please be close to them, please give them a hope and a future.
Open our eyes to see you at work around the world. We thank you for inviting us to be part of your plan to restore creation. We praise you, the giver of life, the redeemer and restorer. Help us to be patient and persistent in prayer in all the places we have not yet seen restoration, including the plight of vulnerable children. Help us to see your light and your plan to save.
We pray this in the name of Jesus.
BREAKING NEW GROUND
A farmer whose land was destroyed by corporate greed finds a new lease of life; not only getting his livelihood back, but also becoming a leader in his community.
Devi* lived a humble life, farming his small plot of land in Cambodia to provide for his wife and six children. But one day that was cruelly taken away from him. A private company, looking for soil for a construction project, took advantage of Devi’s limited education and made an unfair deal to dig up his land. When the rains came, his field flooded. He was ruined. His family had no choice but to move closer to farmable land. They didn’t have enough money to build a house so they lived under a tree on the bank of a river. A curtain was the only thing protecting them from the elements.
Fearing the worst
Devi could no longer earn enough to support his family. Of all his children, only the youngest could stay in school, since they couldn’t afford the expenses for books and supplies. Their eldest son moved to neighbouring Thailand for a better paying job and his parents lost touch with him, fearing the worst. Despite these hardships, Devi’s faith remained strong, and he attended church regularly. It was here that Devi first heard about Tearfund partner World Renew, who had opened a farming school nearby. Devi became a member and learned new techniques in vegetable growing and livestock farming.
Devi started applying his new knowledge. As his own success grew, farmers in the community began coming to him for advice and training. He eagerly encouraged his neighbours to learn the new techniques and adapt their traditional methods in order to improve their income. Devi is now a recognised agricultural leader in his community, and has influenced other farmers to reduce their reliance on chemical pesticides and fertilisers. With his income growing, he’s been able to build a new, safe home for his family. Most importantly, they were able to bring back their son from Thailand. Their children now help on their farm or have land of their own, and the whole family is committed to seeing the youngest child finish his studies.
*Name changed to protect identity
- PLEASE PRAY
- Praise God that justice was restored for Devi, and that his family are safe and reunited.
- Pray that God will continue to bless our partner World Renew, and that their work providing farming training will continue to impact many lives.
- Lift up the country of Cambodia. Pray for those who have been held back by poverty and limited education. Ask God to break these chains.
A STITCH IN TIME
‘I cried and hide myself at home for at least one week from my friends and relatives when my father asked me not to go to school anymore.’ Nandi* was a good student and loved her studies but the family could not afford to let her study and she had to drop out of school.
As with so many in villages in north-west Bangladesh there were very few options. Nandi was then married into another poor family – the gruelling cycle of poverty seemed inescapable.
‘My husband used to make baskets and other handicrafts from bamboos,’ she shares. ‘Income from his business was very limited and we hardly ate twice a day. My father-in-law was sick for a long time and we could not give him good treatment and proper diet. Finally he died without proper treatment and medication. I will never ever forget those miserable days.’
Breaking the cycle
Nandi was desperate to earn extra income and heard about an organisation working in the area. LAMB Hospital works in the north-west of Bangladesh, where over half the population lives in poverty. Working through the local church they show Christ’s love to all as they strengthen and equip communities. Nandi was delighted to be selected by LAMB to join a six-month tailoring course. After successfully completing the training, she was given a sewing machine. With her husband’s help Nandi opened a small tailoring shop at her home and threw herself into the business. She soon became a well respected tailor and has seen the family income increase considerably.
Passing it on
‘Now I am much happier than ever and eat three times in a day, my children go to school on a regular basis and my husband is busy with his traditional basket-making occupation,’ she says with a smile. Young girls and women from her community come to learn tailoring from Nandi and she gladly trains them. ‘I do not take money for the training,’ she shares, ‘as I learned from the Bible. In Matthew 10:8 Jesus said “Freely you have received freely give”.’ The student has flourished and is now the teacher – passing on the gift she received.
* Name changed to protect identity
- PLEASE PRAY
- Give thanks that Nandi was given an opportunity to unlock her gifts and begin a great business. Pray that it will continue to prosper.
- Pray for her as she reaches out to others in her community and generously trains them.
- Pray for Tearfund’s partner LAMB as they work to empower more people with skills and opportunities.
John Gravett – Tearfund Representative