Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Third Largest Global Crime

That was what Human Trafficking was in 2008! The THIRD largest. Today, it is the SECOND largest and by the end of this year, it will be THE largest!

I found this utube video off Tom Davis' blog of Rick Warren interviewing then presidential candidate Barack Obama. He asked Mr. Obama about Human Trafficking and how it is the THIRD largest global crime industry in the world. Mr. Obama's response was that this needs to be a "TOP priority" for the US government. Which is GREAT that he wants to make it a top priority.

But the other point I'm trying to make here is that this interview took place in 2008, less than 3 years ago. During the interview, Mr. Warren mentions that this is the third largest global crime.

So, in less than 3 years, Human Trafficking will grow from #3 to become the LARGEST, the #1 global crime!

I mentioned in my last blog post that orphans are the biggest target of human trafficking.
In most countries, children age out of orphanages at age 15 - 16 years old.

-15% of these orphans commit suicide
-15% to into prostitution

Again, there are 1.2 million children pulled into sex trafficking each year! This is every 2 minutes and 40 times per day a child is lured or forced into this crime industry.

Praying that this is a priority for the US government. And as Tom Davis states on his blog, we need to "greatly hope the President could advance anti-trafficking legislation and policies that both political parties could back and pass into law."

This morning the International Justice Mission (IJM) is applauding President Obama for his words proclaiming January 2011 as anti-trafficking month and his statement:  "From every corner of our nation to every part of the globe, we must stand firm in defense of freedom and bear witness for those exploited by modern slavery."

Now the IJM is asking for 25,000 people to sign a petition asking the President to end modern day slavery.
I urge you to please visit the above link and sign this petition. Let's keep this social issue at the TOP of the President's priority list!

Monday, January 24, 2011

The largest global crime

That's what experts project Human Trafficking to become in the year 2011!

-Human Trafficking is now the Second largest Global Crime next to Drugs!
-Human Trafficking is a 32 billion dollar industry
-25% of the trafficking is from Europe
-Only 1 - 2 percent of those trafficked are rescued.
-1.2 Million are forced into slavery EACH YEAR!

-Orphans are the biggest targets of sex trafficking.

The rapid growth of this industry is frightening! It's not just something happening in a different country either.

Last week, I participated in a Human Trafficking Webinar hosted by Christian Alliance for Orphans and led by Tom Davis, founder of Hopechest. This is where I heard the above statistics. This is when it was confirmed to me the one main thing that fuels this industry -


Pornography creates an appetite for trafficking.

Those who support the pornography industry, such as strip clubs, websites with porn and play boy magazines, are feeding to the Human Trafficking industry!

Searching on the internet and looking at a play boy magazine in your own private home, may seem like to some very innocent and causing no harm to anyone else.

But the opposite it true!! The more demand there is for pornography, the more sex crazy our culture becomes and the more sex crazy our culture becomes, the more demand there is for pornography, the more we feed into the human trafficking industry.

Pornography is the main business that keeps human trafficking in business!

Furthermore, a lot of pornography features women and children who have been trafficked!

We have a "gentleman's club" in our small community. Each weekend, the parking lot is FULL of cars. During deer hunting season and holidays, the parking lot is overflowing!

My daughter Lauren has driven by there on a bus with teammates or classmates who have pointed at the local strip club and said, "My dad goes there." They offer this information to others like they are sharing which golf club their father's golf at.

I wonder how many clients would still be frequenting the club if they knew that some of those girls were victims of human trafficking.

I walked into a local book store with my 7 year old daughter the other day and up on the back wall in plain sight was a play boy calendar. It was very large and very easy to see upon entering the store. My daughter and I were having some special time together and I was going to let her pick out a book. But we had to leave the store after one foot in the door.

I wonder if the store owner would sell pornography if she knew that some of the girls featured in the magazines were trafficked.

So the question is, what can we do? What actions can we take to change the mind sets of a sex crazy culture.

We can begin by educating, which is the purpose of my blog post today. Educate the public about the affects of pornography and it's direct link to human trafficking.

I was going to list sites here showing the research that has been done to prove that there is a link. But just google the topic and you will find numerous sites.

I have so much more to say on this topic in more blog posts to come.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

I Won! and other stuff...

I entered a raffle that my dear on-line friend Andrea offered on her blog to raise money for their home study and I won a coffee maker!

They are beginning the process to adopt their third child from Ethiopia and this time it's going to be a daughter. They are an amazing adoptive family. God willing, I hope to meet Andrea in person some day. I have been following her blog for a long time now and she is a huge inspiration to me.

God has been doing some really cool things in our lives recently. In fact, Andrea's raffle confirmed something for me in a very unique way. I wish I could tell more but I need to wait a little bit longer before I can share on-line.

In other news, our family was asked to staff the Compassion International (CI) table last night at a Peder Eide concert in town. Peder led the worship at the Summit I attended last spring and I love his music. Peder is a spokesperson for CI and an adoptive parent. This is his adoption story. We share a lot of things in common with Peder, so we had a fun conversation sharing our hearts and life experiences with each other.

Then, remember when I posted a while back about a little girl in Haiti that could use some prayers? I have a friend there who was trying to rescue her from a life of slavery. I had not heard from him for a while, so I was starting to worry.

Yesterday, I finally received an email from him with the day by day account of his life this past week. He was able to successfully rescue her. Praise God!!

However, as soon as she was legally in his custody, he became homeless and struggled for 2 nights until he found a place for them to settle. This was the first of many mountains he needs to climb in the near future. He has very limited resource and he has had a lot of friends turn their backs on him. The conditions are so devastating in Haiti, no one wants to help or get involved because they have enough problems of their own.

Please continue to pray for him and this sweet little girl who now has a better future a head of her but still much to overcome. Pray that God will continue to provide. Pray that God will bring a "mother" into her life very soon - she is approaching puberty. My friend needs to return to the US to take care of some business, so pray that God will provide a safe place for his daughter to stay until he can return. Please pray that God will bring people along side my friend to help out and not judge his decision to save this sweet girl's life.

He travelled to Haiti with plans to help orphanages. But God had other plans for him. The enemy told him, this is just one little girl, why pour all your time and resources into saving just one? But to my friend, she was not just another little girl and he wasn't going to sit and watch her get sold into slavery. To him, this girl was a child of God, here for a purpose, a life different than forced slavery. She now has a better chance at living out what God's purpose is for her life.

The statistics of child slavery are staggering, especially since the earthquake. There have been at least 2000 children sold into slavery in Haiti since the earthquake. Sweet "B" was rescued from becoming a statistic. She may be only one child but she is one less child that will be a victim of this horrible crime. And to my friend, her life was worth fighting for. Praise God for her life!

Please pray for the 1.2 million children around the world who are forced into human trafficking EACH year. I have a lot more to say about human trafficking and ways you can help coming in a blog post very soon.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

She Got In!!!

I think I have shared that my daughter Lauren's biggest passion is the violin. This morning I am crying tears of joy because she just learned that she got into the State Orchestra!!

She tried out in October!! The results just came today, so we have been on pins and needles waiting patiently for the results.

Not only did she get in but she was selected to play 1st violin and will have the 15th chair! I don't know how many violinist actually get in but we have been told that literally hundreds try out.

Thanks for letting me brag....I know God has big plans for her to use this beautiful gift in a very special way!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Raffle!

A dear on-line friend of mine has posted a raffle on her blog to raise money for her family's 3rd adoption. She has some very cool items to raffle. For as little as $5, you can have a chance to win! Check it out!
Join in on the fun and help this beautiful family raise the funds they need for their home study!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Under the Same Moon

While in Haiti, a few of us from our group tried to make arrangements to visit an orphanage in Leogane. We were not able to visit this orphanage but it still remains dear to my heart. The name of the orphanage is All God's Children.

Leogane was the epicenter of the earthquake almost one year ago. Although this orphanage was destroyed during the quake, all children and their nannies miraculously survived. After the earthquake, they continued to live on the orphanage property, without a building and without much food or water until July. All the children and their nannies were struggling to survive, just barely hanging on. Most of them became severely malnourished.

And then All God's Children stepped in to help.

Now they have a new orphanage building and receive at least 2 meals a day.

Then, in November, Leogane became the hardest hit city from the hurricane. During the worst weather, all orphans and nannies evacuated to the roof of the orphanage while the building was flooded by heavy rain storms. They congregated on the roof through the entire night, clinging to each other until the storms subsided by morning.

At the same time, several of the children were in the hospital with cholera symptoms.

Once again, all survived the hurricane and the cholera for now. But they continue to be in much need of our support and encouragement.

So, a good friend of mine designed a T-shirt to raise money for this orphanage. This is a really cool shirt. Go here to find out for yourselves and please consider supporting the least of these through the purchase of one of these amazing shirts.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Our story of giving back

Today, I am a guest blogger over on Kari Gibson's blog, My Crazy Adoption. If you are interested in the whole story of how it came to be that our family became involved with Drawn From Water, go to Kari's blog.