Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Slavery Awareness

Okay this is not my normal post, but I wanted to share/teach you all something that you may or may not know much about.
Last year, my oldest, who at the time was 15 years old, came to us and shared a concern/burden about Human Trafficking/Slavery, which she had come across in her reading of books. We then began to do some research ourselves, and were alarmed at the numbers and statisics and the childern and adults that were imprisioned in this.   Most of us are not aware that it still exists to day.  In fact it is worse today than it ever was before.  So let me give you some statisics and information about it.

Definition of Human TraffickingThe United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime defines human trafficking as recruiting, transporting, transferring, harboring or receiving a person through a use of force, coercion or other means for the purpose of exploiting them. In fact Slavery didn't end with the Civil war. In fact it has grown bigger than ever
There are more slaves today than in any other time in history.
  •  More than 27 million people are trapped in slavery today.
  • It's estimated that there are 200,000 people trapped in slavery in the United States, and 17,000 more will be trafficked in the next year.
  • The average price for a slave in 1809 was $40,000 now it is only $90. 
  • 50% of all victims of slavery are children. 80% of all victims of slavery are women.
  • Human trafficking and sex slavery is a serious problem that exists right in our backyards. It is not something that only happens in other countries. There are 11,000 runaways a year in Ohio, and a runaway is likely to be forced into prostitution within 48 hours.  
  • The three greatest risk factors for women being trafficked into the sex trade are: having an older boyfriend, dropping out of school, or being raped before the age of 18.
  • Human trafficking — sexual, domestic, industrial and agricultural — is a $32 billion per year industry.
  • Women and children make up 80 percent of all trafficking victims who are forced into the commercial sex trade.
  • Nearly 2 million children are involved in the international commercial sex trade.
  • Human trafficking occurs in 161 out of 192 countries.
  • Up to 96 percent of women in prostitution want to escape but feel they can’t.
  • In some countries, it is estimated that 70 percent of men purchase sex.
  •  Pornography is a $96 billion per year industry.
  •  1.5 million are trafficked in developed economies, the European Union and the United States.
Okay, that is just some of the statistics that I have come to learn and know.  It has all broken my heart and given me a new look on life and people.  We as a church and family and mostly our youth group want to make a difference in someones life, and make a change in our world by raising awareness in our community.  So last year we had a campaign to raise loose change.  Did you know, there is an estimated 10.5 billion dollars in loose change lying around in U.S. households.  That is alot of money that could change someones life!  Well, last year our little youth group of 4 kids raised $400.  We were so proud of them and we sent it in to International Justice Mission, who are Lawyers, investigators and aftercare professionals work with local officials to rescue victims, prosecute perpetrators and protect the poor.
We were so proud of them and amazed at how God worked through them.  They educated us as parents, then moved on to teaching our church family and are working at doing the same for our community. So I wanted to share some of the picutres of what they did last year and what they are doing this year! 
This is from last year, 2012, but it is of, my daughter and friend/cousin, raising awareness in our community.
 Our Counting Party of all the loose change we raised in 2012

$400 with such a small group!  God is so good!
Now this year they have almost filled a  gallon ice cream bucket up with loose change.
And this weekend is our big and last push, to raise money and awareness, for it!  So we made T-shirts with stencils that we made, using my cricut and a clear acetate sheet from an office suppy store. 
 Here is some of the girls working on painting their shirts!
 The red X is very wet and red!
Almost done!
All finished! 
Not bad for our first time doing fabric painting and making our own stencil!
There will be more pictures to follow in the near future!
"You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know."
               - William Wilberforce
Thanks for taking the time to read this and learning with us!
I hope you have a day filled with many blessings!

Cardmaking Beginings

I just want to share with you all, real quick, something special.  My daughter who is 11 has been making cards for people off and on through the years.  I usually give her my "scraps" and this includes a bunch of Cricut cuts that I have changed my mind about...most of them I struggle to even give to her.  But hey, it helps to keep down the pile of scraps for me.  She really enjoys getting them too!  It is with pure delight that she takes them from me.  Anyways, with those "scraps"  She goes and makes her own cards for people.  Since she has been doing this and enjoying it, people have bought her some supplies and paper of her own, like the Cuttlebug for kids, and her own paper...  She is now accumulating a nice "pile" of supplies of her own.  LOL  Anyways, when she made this card she was delighted at how well it turned out, and asked if I would take a picture of it.  So I knew that meant that she wanted me to share it with you all!  She gets a little bit of coaching from me but most of it she does on her own.  It gives her something constructive to do and gives Mommy some "quiet time".  It also helps teach her to think of others, and their likes and such.  Sometimes she is the one who reminds me of someones birthday/anniversary and such.  Anyways, here is what she came up with using some of my scraps! I think she did a pretty good job, too!
Thanks for stopping by and taking a peek at what WE have been busy doing!
Enjoy and leave her some love!
I hope you have a great day!