A year ago, we opened a feeding center in the heart of a community in the Philippines where child slavery was thriving — where pedophiles preyed on impoverished families and even some parents felt compelled to sell their children for sex.
We wanted to eliminate the link between desperation and exploitation, so we began to provide food, medicine and education… some of the needs that push families and their children into the bondage of sexual exploitation. And we began listening to the children.
Of the many children who came through our doors, it didn’t take us long to spot four girls that were in especially serious danger. We began to notice heartbreaking injuries that could only come from sexual exploitation. In their childlike ways, they disclosed that their parents were selling them to pedophiles.
Hands tied by protocol, hearts torn to intervene. We’ve faced this before:
Not knowing what happened to
the girl who wore 146 haunts us everyday.
We vowed this story would end differently.
Everything inside of us wanted to take these girls out of their community. But it’s never as simple as snatching a child up. At the time, we could only legally provide so much care and it was gut-wrenching to know that when they walked out of our feeding center, they were walking into a horror that no child should ever face.
Love is tenacious…
After months of partnering with local law enforcement and working with the Philippines Department of Social Welfare & Development, we gained full custody of Camila, Claudia, Sonya and Ariel. They’re safe and sound in our Round Home, and we’re looking forward to celebrating this holiday season with them in our family.
This holiday season, help ensure that survivors are cared for.
This work is impossible without your support.