15 Powerful Photos of the Journey From Child Slavery to Freedom

A boy with a net wrapped around his shoulders

Millions of children around the world remain trapped in child labor. Ebenezer was 6 years old when he was sent to work on Lake Volta, a notorious hotbed of child slavery. These 15 powerful photos capture the injustice he faced … and his journey to freedom.

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How My Own Family Enslaved Me

The silhouette of two people throwing a fishing net into a lake.

Brenya’s aunt said she was taking him to another village to go to school. But instead he was forced into unpaid labor on Lake Volta.

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A boy sitting in a small boat

5 Things That Protect Vulnerable Children From Human Trafficking

More than a third of the over 40 million people trapped in human trafficking around the world are children. But there are stories of faith, hope and freedom from child trafficking. When these five things are present, children are better protected from people trying to hurt them.

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Ghanaian woman and children posing for camera

How Can Sponsorship Help Prevent Child Slavery?

JD’s sponsored child did not know that child slavery was happening in his own country — to children just like him. And, JD did not know that she was helping prevent this from happening to him.

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human trafficking awareness day

Today Is the Day to Do Something About Human Trafficking

How can we (and so many people we know) be so overwhelmed and so outraged about human trafficking and have it still exist in our world today?

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children sitting on floor in Haiti

Evil Schemes and Generous Plans

The enemy has spoken lying words to those caught in his scheme. He has told them they don’t matter. He has made them believe they are all alone in their suffering. He has deceived them into thinking their situation will never change.

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a sad serious girl

The New Slavery — Human Trafficking

Currently, more slaves exist than during the time of slave trade abolitionist William Wilberforce. But unlike in Wilberforce’s day, 80 percent of today’s slaves are women and girls; 50 percent are children. The slave trade is far from history. In fact, it is very much the shame of our world today.

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front of church

Life in Bagamoyo, Tanzania — Ancient Epicenter of Slavery

This area’s culture has been affected by the Arabs and the slave trade. Bagamoyo played a major role as a terminal for slaves who were captured from the mainland, shipped to Zanzibar’s major slave market, and subsequently sold to Arab countries and the Middle East. Generally, people of Bagamoyo and the coast do not put much weight in work, as they associate hard work with slavery.

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I’ve been putting off writing this post. There are some things that are just easier not to think about.

They’re called “throw-aways,” people whom the world has no use for. (more…)

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Share Your Umbrella

A few weeks ago my little girl Brooklyn asked me for some cookies and milk for herself and her 2-year-old brother. They sat down in front of the TV in their pajamas (we call them jammies at our house) and watched their favorite DVD while I served them cookies and milk.

That’s when it hit me. We are so blessed!

There my kids are eating chocolate chip cookies and cold milk with nothing on their mind but “I hope Dad forgets that we’re supposed to do nap time today.” While somewhere in a land far, far away from their minds (and mine most of the time) is a little girl Brooklyn’s same age working long hours of forced labor who has never had a day of cookies and milk in her whole life. Somewhere there is a child my daughter’s age (4) that will work harder today than I will and will go to sleep hungry tonight.

On our refrigerator at home there is a picture of our sponsored child. Her name is Heidi, and she lives in Bolivia. (Brooklyn thinks the little girl’s name is Bolivia.) We pray for Heidi often. We pray for her to have plenty to eat. Sponsoring Heidi is a great way for my wife and I to teach our children about others’ needs and how we can help by sharing.

Last Wednesday at Compassion’s chapel service I had the chance to hear a young man that truly grasps the power of sharing. Zach Hunter is a 16-year-old abolitionist who is giving his life to the cause of releasing slaves and giving them their God-given right to freedom. He has been speaking out against slavery since he was 11 years old.

I wonder how many students (or adults for that matter) have even thought about slavery today. Thanks to Zach Hunter at least 600 people thought about slavery that day in chapel and 500,000 more will think about it this year as he speaks to them.

As I studied Zach’s message I realized it is storming all around us, and for whatever reason God has given most of us in this country an umbrella. He didn’t give us an umbrella so that we would deny that it is storming. He gave us the umbrella to acknowledge the storm and share our umbrella with those who don’t have one.

Zach asked the question, “How do people in severe poverty know that God is good?” The only way they could know that is if God’s people share His goodness with those who have not experienced it.

It’s raining hard, Church. Share your umbrella.

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