Skip to comments.Ministry seeks to rescue potential victims of sex trafficking
Posted on 09/23/2005 7:51:21 PM PDT by -=[_Super_Secret_Agent_]=-
Ministry seeks to rescue potential victims of sex trafficking
By Craig Bird
Baptist Child & Family Services
CHISINAU, Moldova--Homeless teenaged girls vulnerable to victimization by the international sex slave trade are the focus of a new ministry of Children's Emergency Relief International.
The Chosen for Life Project in Moldova aims to make a difference in the lives of teenage girls who are too old for the state orphanage system and are left homeless, said Steve Davis, executive director of Children's Emergency Relief International, the overseas arm of Baptist Child & Family Services.
These girls are prime targets for intentionally deceptive newspaper ads that promise high-paying secretarial or nanny jobs in Europe or the Middle East--just a few of the tactics being used by the organized crime syndicates that prey on them, Davis explained. Volunteer Christina Gandy (right) became close friends with Eugenia last summer during her mission trip to Moldova with Children's Emergency Relief International.
Moldova provides an estimated 60 percent of the tens of thousands of women involved in prostitution rings throughout Eastern Europe.
"Chosen for Life is a transitional living program as distinguished from an independent living arrangement. It will be a residential program with a strong vocational component," Davis noted.
Children's Emergency Relief International, which has worked in Moldovan orphanages since 1999, recently purchased an unfinished three-story house in Chisinau that will house 25 girls comfortably and serve as a center for another 50 who can access its services.
Grace House, as the 10,000 square-foot structure is being called, is the first of what the agency envisions as a network of transition houses scattered throughout the country, linked to local Baptist churches and with ongoing relationships with Christian volunteers from the United States.
Children's Emergency Relief International is involved in a campaign to raise $100,000 in response to a $50,000 challenge gift from Houston businessman David Weekley to complete and furnish the building.
First Baptist Church of Huntington contributed $35,000, and Trinity Baptist Church in San Antonio gave $15,000. Several individuals also have made substantial donations.
Volunteer Christina Gandy, from Curry Creek Baptist Church in Boerne, saw the complexity of the situation first hand during a Bible study at a Children's Emergency Relief International-sponsored camp this summer. During a Bible study in their cabin about Rahab the prostitute, she made the comment that prostitution was wrong.
"In the United States if you said something like that in Sunday school, no one would think much about it because it wouldn't apply to their lives," she said.
"But the girls started interrupting and saying things like, 'But Rahab was providing for her family' and, 'It's not wrong if you doing it for your family and if it's all you have.' They were very serious--and they were all under the age of 13. That's what broke my heart. Some of them knew what it was like to have a mother in prostitution. It was survival. It was their life."
Chosen for Life intends to break that cycle. As a result of relationships developed among Children's Emergency Relief International volunteers and the girls over the past six years, the agency already has a client base of girls who are or soon will be "in desperate need of shelter and training in marketable skills," Davis explained.
Another key concept of Chosen for Life is a vocational "incubator" program that will form up to three companies during a two-year cycle, where the girls, working with the agency's Moldovan staff and local Baptists as well as American volunteers, will develop their own businesses. The goal is for the teams, upon graduation, to carry on the work independently.
The first such project, a sewing/quilting operation called Wonderfully Made will produce quilts and quilted products while adhering to a strict business plan.
A second opportunity already has girls and boys assembling chandelier crystals for Schonbek Worldwide Lighting at an anticipated monthly salary of $150 per worker, "which in Moldova is a decent wage," Davis noted.
But as promising as the vocational and educational payoffs are, it is the spiritual promise that most excites Davis.
"We already have seen amazing results from the long-term sponsorships many of our volunteers have with orphans," he ex-plained. "Most of these kids have never had an adult to love them, an adult they can trust, and they respond hungrily to that.
"In Chosen for Life, that type of relationship will be enhanced by professional mentorship and even more opportunities for them to see what faith in Jesus Christ means to their American friends, since part of each transition house will be housing for the volunteer teams.
"Then by linking the houses to local Baptist churches, there will be natural bridges to other Moldovan believers. I just can't get the feeling out of my head and my heart that this can be a key to evangelizing the entire country as these young women learn about faith as they learn job skills and move out into society and share that faith with others."
Summer camps run by Texas Baptist volunteers are the highlights of the year for many Moldovan orphans like these girls.
Volunteer Christina Gandy (right) became close friends with Eugenia last summer during her mission trip to Moldova with Children's Emergency Relief International
We "really" need to stop focusing on the slavery of the past and stamp out slavery as it exists in today's world. The sooner it ends, the better for society as a whole.
Most Libertarians are conservative Christians who don't toe the lunatic national party line.
I can't go one or two threads in a post about porn, drugs, or illegal aliens without listening to some FReeper schmuck make the obligatory anti-Libertarian smear.
The truth hurts ... scroll away if you are itching for a flame war.
lets not turn this into a flame thread, ok?
We should be thankful for what the ministry is doing.
I'm just pointing out that what you're doing is engaging in irrelevant, off-topic pyschobabble and will only create a flame-war which will result in the thread being pulled.
Well, I have opinions of LIBERALpublicans too, but I'm not going to share them with you.
"It doesn't hurt me because I'm not affected by it. I don't participate in the things that you stereotype Libertarians of doing.
I'm just pointing out that what you're doing is engaging in irrelevant, off-topic pyschobabble and will only create a flame-war which will result in the thread being pulled."
My opinion is not what you claim.
You simply don't like my opinion and YOU wish to start a "flame war" with me.
Just musing about LIBERALtarians makes me laugh.
"Well, I have opinions of LIBERALpublicans too, but I'm not going to share them with you."
I'm also not interested.
I like Geography but the location eludes me.
P.S. I'd also be Highly interested in contributing financially.
Tis tiresome, though I left them long ago. The point here is the effort to stop these monstrous excuses for humans pimping out children for profit. Interpol is very effective busting international crime rings of many sorts...I can't think of a better target than scum who'd sell their own daughters for money.
Our own law enforcement could be doing a better job preventing this in our own country, considering how a ring was busted in NYC after prostituting children as young as five after reportedly operating freely (in an illegal immigrant-dominated neighborhood) for at least three years.
One wonders how God exists in the hearts of those who'd indulge in such evil.
Well, I congratulate you on entrapment then, because you purposefully posted the thread knowing that it'll generate a response.