Somaly Mam: My New Project

08.17.11

The most terrifying problem we face in the modern world today is Human Trafficking. This blog covers many problems that women face today, but it's primary objective is to raise awareness about sexual slavery of women and little girls. More than anything I wish to encourage all who visit this site to spread the word and hopefully donate to The Somaly Mam Foundation.

The Somaly Mam Foundation is a charity that rescues and provides shelter for victims of sexual slavery. Somaly Mam is a survivor herself who, as a 12 year old child living in Cambodia, was forced to work in a brothel, being tortured and raped multiple times a day for many years. Children ages 6 to 16 are sold to these brothels as sexual slaves and experience horrors even worse than Somaly Mam herself suffered. Somaly Mam has build shelters in Cambodia to provide safety and protection for victims of these unimaginable crimes. She also provides instruction for the girls in basic skills that can help them gain independence. A donation of $30 can provide sewing lessons for a survivor for a month. $50 can cover the costs of sheltering a newly rescued survivor for a month.

Very little is required to make a difference. Most charities you find require a donation of at least $1000 dollars to make even the slightest difference. When donating to The Somaly Mam Foundation, a donation of only $5 will help since one US dollar is enough to feed an entire Cambodian family for a day.

I'm not a rich person, so hearing that only $5 can make a difference was huge to me. I can hardly bear to think about the horrors these precious little children go through, but I also know that I can no longer just sit around and not do anything about it. As soon as I knew I wanted to help somehow, I visited http://www.somaly.org to learn what someone like me can do. I've learned that aside from small regular donations, one of the best things anyone can do is just make as many people aware of human trafficking as possible. I had no idea sexual slavery was such a huge problem today. According to Somaly Mam's website, human trafficking is the second largest crime industry in the world, receiving 10 billion dollars a year from it's clients. There are more slaves in the world today then there have been at any other time in human history.

Even more shocking, it's happening right under our noses. This particular foundation provides shelter and protection for Cambodian victims, but sexual slavery is a crime being committed all over the world, as well as the United States. It just astounds me to learn about such things. I've lived such a sheltered life of freedom and independence that's it's hard for me to imagine what these poor women and children are suffering right now. These horrific crimes can NOT be ignored. Every single person needs to be aware of this hidden industry. It's the secrecy of it that feeds it's power. Once someone new learn the facts, it gets us that much closer to putting an end to this madness.

I'd really like to ask your help in spreading the word about The Somaly Mam Foundation. I encourage you to read Somaly Mam's book The Road of Lost Innocence, and visit the foundation's official website http://www.somaly.org/. I can't think of anyone else who needs our help more than these little girls who haven't had a real chance at life yet. Use Facebook and Twitter to spread the word on a regular basis about The Somaly Mam Foundation, and remember, even $5 can make a difference!

To donate to The Somaly Mam Foundation through my online fundraiser, CLICK HERE. Help us reach a goal of $10,000!

Article written by Shelly Allen.

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