“When you remember me, it means that you have carried something of who I am with you, that I have left some mark of who I am on who you are. For as long as you remember me, I am never entirely lost.”
A few weeks ago I woke up in the morning to find my Twitter feed had blown up with the hashtag #RememberTheGirl — a campaign launched by makeup demonstrator and entrepreneur Michelle Phan to support the work of Love146.
I was moved to tears as I saw hundreds of pictures (now thousands) of people from all over the world writing the number 146 on their hands as a way to remember and honor one girl, and all of those she represents.
Then it went deeper as thousands of people began visiting our website for long periods of time to learn more about the issue of child trafficking and exploitation as well as to explore ways to practically help.
I contacted Dr. Gundelina Velazco, our Director of Survivor Care in the Philippines, and filled her in on Michelle’s campaign. She then shared it with the children in our care at the Love146 Round Home. And as you can see by the pictures, they enthusiastically joined right in!
These are the kinds of things that cause my thoughts to travel back to the young girl I met in that brothel years ago, known only by the number 146. If she could only see this now. Not only being remembered and honored by Michelle and her legion of friends and followers, but also honored in the lives of these resilient young girls. Children who are now on a journey of recovery in a safe place because of one girl.
A girl we remember. A girl we honor. A girl who was much more than a number pinned to her dress.