Doris* was one of the fortunate few who went to school and graduated, an opportunity afforded to few in her hometown. After graduating, Doris was eager to use her education and find a job opportunity in a more economically stable country, she had ambition and wanted to forge a successful career for herself. She was searching for a future full of hope and endless possibilities. So when she met Joseph*, who seemed to offer her all these things, she couldn’t believe her luck.
Joseph offered to pay for her travel to South Africa, a generosity she felt she couldn’t refuse. He seemed so eager to help her and was confident, knowing exactly what was needed to get her into the country. When they arrived in SA, he convinced her to agree to pose as his daughter, triggering an alarm bell. “If he has done everything legally, why would I need to pose as his daughter?” she thought, a few holes appearing in the future she had envisioned for herself. But as she was already at the border, she didn’t have much choice, so agreed to his plan to get her through immigration.
Fortunately for Doris, our team felt prompted to approach her and interview the pair. Discrepancies in their stories soon emerged. Doris started to get very anxious and stressed, the lies wrapping around her, but revealing to us that she hadn’t in fact done her research and that she was at risk of being trafficked. Further investigation confirmed our fears, so we shared our concerns with her, and gave her tools for finding foreign employment safely and sent her home. There she can plan her future knowing how to avoid exploitation.
Like so many, Doris was offered a dream that was too good to be true but didn’t do her research, she didn’t assess the opportunity properly. Unfortunately, not everyone has someone intervene before their dreams come crashing down and they are trapped in sexual exploitation raped daily, beaten, abused. We are therefore working hard to expand our reach so that we can protect innocent lives from trafficking, why not join the fight, and help others like Doris to forge a future of hope.
*Not the real names