Sex Trafficking

Shekels Of Silver

The Sex Trafficking Ministry of Kesitah International Ministries

Human Trafficking has existed since the beginning of time.  In the first book of the Bible, Joseph was sold by his own brothers for twenty shekels of silver (about $200 by today’s standards) – Genesis 37:28.  But Joseph’s slavery eventually led to the redemption and salvation of those same brothers and the Hebrew Race.  God had a plan for the slavery that he endured.

SOS is an internationally recognized distress code – a call for help.  Here at Kesitah, we do more than listen to that call – we take action to come alongside individuals and organizations already in the field rescuing victims of sex trafficking.  We work in Sierra Leone, Benin and India in all facets of Sex Slavery.

When money is exchanged for the ownership of one individual to another – Human Trafficking has occurred, regardless of whether these individuals have crossed territorial borders.  Additionally, anytime a minor is involved in prostitution (by both forced and unforced coercion), by definition this also falls under “Sex Trafficking” because a minor cannot give legal consent to engage in sex (this also is statutory rape).  Once this monetary exchange takes place, the victim is now enslaved in a lifestyle not to their choosing.  Shekels have been replaced by shackles.

Sex Trafficking normally starts out with deception but soon evolves into a constant cycle of rape, beatings, threats, confinement and living in inhumane conditions.  Most sex trafficking victims will service between five and thirty customers per day.  Victims are often malnourished, sleep deprived, suffer emotional and physical abuse in addition to the daily sexual abuse.  Forced abortions, STD’s, Hepatitis, and AIDS are eventual outcomes to these young ladies.  Some girls even commit suicide when it becomes apparent that they will never be able to escape.  Unfortunately, up to 27 million people alive today are victims of Human Trafficking.

Here at Kesitah, we believe that victims of sex trafficking are worth more than a handful of shekels. Please join with us in rescuing these girls as we see their eternal value.

Sierra Leone

Daughters of the King

girlsKesitah International Ministries first started rescuing girls out of sex trafficking in this country.  We have been working here since 2008 with orphans and widows that have lost fathers and husbands to the civil war that shattered their country from 1991 until 2003.  In the early part of 2010, the widows that we assist started visiting brothels in the capital city of Freetown – knowing of our desire to rescue girls that were trapped in this lifestyle.  Every Wednesday, the madams of two different establishments allowed our widows to go in and share Jesus Christ with these young ladies.  Some of the girls were as young as eleven and a few had been involved in prostitution since they were nine.  All were minors and they all wanted out.  The madams said they would let the girls go free for $60 a head.  We sent $350 and they were able to get seven girls out.  We immediately gave these girls a new trade – they were now artists - making greeting card designs.  By the time we sent $1100, they had rescued 32 girls.  We asked the widows how this was possible, and they told us that the madam is now setting the girls free for no charge because they are doing the work of the Lord – making Christian greeting cards.

Now these girls have been given a new name – “Daughters of the King.”  They are living in their new palace - a huge home on the side of a hill overlooking the ocean.  This home is a “safe house” that is ran by the widows of the church.  There are now 60 girls in the home. Most of them have returned to school and a few of them are being treated for AIDS.  Here are a few of their stories:

Isha

ishaIsha is a fifteen year old young lady that was rescued from a life of prostitution in Freetown, Sierra Leone.  She is now being cared for by the Women’s Ministry of the Church of God (7th Day) and lives in a safehouse where she is putting her life back together.  She writes the following:

“When I was very young (I don’t remember my age, maybe 5 or 6), both of my parents were put to death.  I did not start school but was taken to a refugee camp known as the Shell – Living with People for Survival.  I stayed there for quite some time but left when I was eleven.  I thought I could do better than this dead end.  So at eleven I took to prostitution and street life.  In the early part of 2010 some women from a church started coming on the streets and telling me about Jesus and the way to eternal life.  They invited me to their church and later advised me to leave this prostitution.  But the first question I asked was if they really could be able to take care of me.  If the answer was “yes” then I would leave the street life.  After I joined their project, they made it possible to make greeting cards with the drawings and paintings that we produce.  They also helped me to write down these words as I have never been to school.  I would hope to some day.”

Jemimah

jemimah

“I did not know my father.  My mother was once a prostitute.  She encountered me with pregnancy when she was doing prostitution.  My uncle explained the whole story about my mother.  She did die just after she delivered me.  According to my uncle, he said she died with HIV/AIDS.

My uncle started taking care of me when I was a baby.  His wife cared for me so much that she took me as her own daughter.  They sent me to school and they encouraged me to not be discouraged about my family situation.

When I was eleven, my uncle and his wife died in a sea accident.  Their body was not found.  Life became tough and difficult for me. I decided to meet people to help them with work to get my living.  One day I met a girl in the street and she persuaded me in this prostittution.  We both moved and lived in a brothel home.

However, I am very lucky when the women ministry came and tell us about God and the way to Jesus.  When they explain to me about sins I wept a lot and I think I was lost. I decided to live with the (DOK). I am now with them and doing drawing and painting.  We also thank Brian Baker for his love and concern towards the Daughters of King.  May God help some one who can wipe my tears…”

Zainab

“When I was young (less than seven), my parents were killed by rebel soldiers in our country.  I was then raped by these men and forced to serve them.  Before too much time passed, a friend of my mother’s helped me escape and flee to Freetown where we lived as displaced citizens.  Life was difficult but made worse because the lady that brought me to the city died of cancer after a few years.  I then did the only thing I knew how and that was join myself in prostitution in order to get food in my hand.  I worked at a brothel until a Women’s Ministry in Sierra Leone contacted me.

“In the early part of 2010 the ladies came to my brothel home and told us about Jesus Christ and the way to eternal life.  They invited us to their church and later advised us to leave this prostitution.  I made the decision to trust them and go with them after they made arrangements with the manager of the brothel.  After I joined their project, they made it possible to make greeting cards with the drawings and paintings that we produce.  Thank you for sponsoring me - Yours in Christ Jesus - Zainab."

girls

The future is now very bright for these young ladies.  They are trying to catch up in school, still making greeting cards and pictures that can be framed for purchase (see orphan cards tab).  In 2012, we intend to start a day and night care center for the girls to start babysitting infants and small children of other women that are still in the prostitution trade.

Benin

In Benin and Togo, the horrendous religious practice of Vudusi takes place. Thousands of young children (usually virgin girls) are trapped in this practice of being given to the voodoo idol gods and the witch doctors who oversee these temples.  These children become wives and slaves of the temple god by their parents or other family members – often to pay a debt or atone for a sin.  Once becoming property of the temple, these children are now known as “vudusi”, meaning wives or slaves of the gods.  It is not uncommon for this practice to become multi-generational and the children to bear more children into this horrendous form of child slavery.  There are more than 3000 girls trapped as temple prostitutes in Benin and Togo as temple slaves.  Our friend and associate, Pastor Michael, has been rescuing Vudusi girls for several years, placing them in Christian homes and helping rehabilitate them after years of toture and abuse.  Here are a few of their stories:

Dorcas

dorcus“I was born into a polygamous family of 22 and was the fifth child of seven by my mother.  As soon as my mother had this seventh child she became insane.  From the story we were told, a witch doctor was invited into the home to cure my mother of her madness.  This doctor demanded a large sum of money from my father.  My father, along with my mother’s parents did not have the money.  Instead I was given as payment for the cure of my mother.  I am told that my mother was cured of her madness for a short time and then died.  The blame was put on my father for being irresponsible.  I remained a wife to the 65 year old witch doctor from the time I was twelve until sixteen. 

When I was sixteen, one of the witch doctor’s sons started raping me.  I was told that if I told on him he would kill me and that I should not refuse his further advances.  By this time, the witch doctors had twelve wives and many children.  I decided to run away and some people took me to a Christian Pastor named Michael who was holding some evangelistic meetings in the area.  Michael took me to the Community Head who demanded that I be turned over to him and that he would send me back to school.  But it was only a trick for him to take me as his wife.  Michael persuaded the Community Head to allow me to go back with him to pick up my belongings.  This Community Head said that he would send one of his deputies with us to make sure we didn’t run away.  But Michael paid the deputy a bribe of $345 and we left the area, never to return.

When I was first taken in by the church, I had bad health, many mosquito bites, pneumonia as well as some sexually transmitted diseases.

I now stay with a sister of Pastor Michael’s church.  I help her by doing household chores as well as grow food on the farmland.  I only finished through the 5th grade but would like to return to school.  I hope someday to become a chef or do catering.  But first I would like to return to school and maybe even go to University.  I enjoy spending time in nature and cooking.  I’m also involved with the church in doing house to house evangelism.  At first I had a hard time to associate with others.  I did not understand this prayer and had never heard of or seen this Holy Bible before.  I now have learned to pray and occasionally lead worship and praises in the Christian church that I attend.  I am hoping for a sponsor so that I may buy clothing, sleeping materials, monthly upkeep and to return to school or to learn catering.  I am learning to have confidence once again and thank Jesus for my new life.”

Christiane

Christiane:
christiane“My father was a Voodoo adherent all of his life.  He had a sudden death and I was taken in by my grandfather.  My grandfather had a python god in the house that he had made a vow to before my father was born.  He promised to marry all females born in the family to the gods if he would be given a male child.  When my father died, my grandfather felt he was being punished for not honoring his vow and so he sent me to the Chief Voodoo Priest for cleansing and preparation for the marriage service to the gods.  I was married to this Priest for two years when Pastor Michael rescued me.”

Michael:
“When I heard the predicament of this girl, I was concerned on how we might possibly extract her.  It seems that she was of the highest order of the cult – called a princess.  After two weeks of pondering the situation I went to this village called Mono Couffo to get her.  I posed as one who wanted to consult the gods and insisted that it must be Christiane who I must see.  After some persuasion, I was able to speak to her and ask her all I could before the fetish chief came in.  It was very difficult for her to believe me considering all she had gone through.  I showed her pictures of other orphans and widows that I work with.  Then I showed her pictures of a few other Vudusi girls that I had helped escape.  That did the trick.  I left her with some cash for transportation – in the presence of the Chief Voodoo priest who thought I was paying her for work well done.  After nine days, she pretended to be going to the forest to look for ritual herbs.  She caught a transport, called us and we met her.  She is from the northern part of the country and we live in another area, so we do not believe that they will be able to track her down.”

Christiane:
“I did drop out of school when I was young and hope to return.  I hope to become a hair dresser some day.  I help “grandma” with household chores.  She is really just a lady from the church but treats me as her own.  I also enjoy gardening.  It seems that I am in good health.”

Michael:
“Christiane is learning so fast and is forgetting her sad experiences of growing up face to face with demons.  After her deliverance and confession in Jesus Christ she was baptized and now growing in her faith.”

India

In India, we are happy to personally know individuals that operate two different sex trafficking ministries in the New Delhi area.

Sujo John – an internationally known speaker who was in the World Trade Center when it was hit on Sept 11, 2001.  Sujo has set up a safe house called the House of Rahab that currently has fourteen girls.  You can find out more on his website: www.sujojohn.com

Roger and Hiroko Seth – Our friends have a safe house called Courage Homes outside Delhi. They prayed and prepared for many years. They have a full staff and favor with the local police department. They rescue young girls out of the sex trafficking industry and disciple them in Christ for a new life. You can view their website at: www.couragehomes.org