Be still. Pause. Close your mind off to the world. What are you thinking about? What occupies your mind the majority of your days? For me the answer is worry or complaints, much of the time. Or it's things that really bare no significance at all. Since when did I start thinking about me, me, me the majority of the time?
My parents have been begging me to watch Taken since before my trip to Dublin, London and Paris. I even considered watching it on the plane ride to Europe, my first time out of the country. Tonight I finally watched it. As the credits came on, my parents asked me what I thought about the movie, comparing the father in the film to Jason Bourne. But my mind was somewhere else. The last time I cried so much after a film was The Changeling, another film that made me realize how sick some people truly are. I sit here, my heart broken for these girls who are sold into sex-trafficking. I think about my trip overseas, how easily it could have been for that to happen. Then I think how easy it would be for that to happen here, anywhere. And then my mind escapes into the horror, the reality of it all.
I've been researching things online for the past hour now. And I want to share some heart-breaking stats I found at Crisisaid.org:
- 1.2 million children are trafficked every year; this is in addition to the millions already held captive by trafficking.
- Every 2 minutes a child is being prepared for sexual exploitation.
- The average victim is forced to have sex up to 40 times a day.
- The average age of a trafficked victim is 14 years old.
- Approximately 30 million children have lost their childhood through sexual exploitation over the past 30 years.
- Sex trafficking is an engine of the global AIDS epidemic.
- People are trafficked from 127 countries to be exploited in 137 countries.
- Between 14,500 and 17,500 victims are trafficked into the USA each year.
- The total market value of illicit Sex Trafficking is estimated to be in excess of $32 billion.
- By 2010 Sex Trafficking will be the number one crime worldwide.
Tonight I send out a prayer for all the victims of this horrific crime. And I pray that God will lead me to what action I must take to help make a difference. I know I can start with the offering that will taken at my church this Christmas. This offering will be going toward a secured facility to care and house teens from the sex trade. It's a fundraising campaign that is partnered with 25 other churches. Because as of now, the only available options for a charged prostitute that is a minor, is to either be sent to a Juvenile Detention Center, be admitted into Child Protective Services, or return home. Victims of sex trafficking suffer from a variety of psychological, physical and social wounds that must be treated within a controlled and supportive setting.
If you want to find out more information on how you can help end sex-trafficking, visit HumanTrafficking.org.
Sending all of you love and hoping you stay safe, Krissie ★