hard to look at

Monday, April 21, 2008

Why did I post a random picture of the Managua dump, you ask?

I was working on the poster board sign for our Nicaragua trip and needed some pictures of Nicaraguan children so I went on Flickr...(which is such an unbelievably cool place on the internet, btw.) Not only did I find pictures of children, I found pictures of children in the actual dump, "La Chureca", where we will be going in June to try and help rescue children out of. They are hard to look at. They made me cry, but I guess they should.
I sent out our support letters this weekend. I'm guessing if you read my blog, I probably had you on my list :-) If you didn't get one and want to help us with funds and prayers for our trip, we'd be blessed.

Hungry dump girls. This picture appears to have been taken just this month. The caption said that they looked fairly well dressed, but they were obviously hungry. They would dig around and find food, smell it first and then eat.
Delivery. I guess it's like Christmas when the dump trucks make a "delivery". Over 3000 people LIVE in this dump. Not visit. They have their little shanties. Many of the women and children have never been outside of it.
The most reliable source of income is prostitution. Families encourage it and sell their daughters (as young as 11) to the truck drivers for the equivalent of $1.
This is Gloria. She's been building relationships with the families in the dump and decided she needed to see if she could do more.
It's called Villa Esperanza.
So she is partnering with Forward Edge International to build this. It's called Village of hope. They'll be able to house women and childrens in "families" of 8 and host teams to come and help out. That's where we come in. We'll be one of the first teams and will be able to help with the building and also on outreach to the dump. We're hoping to identify specific ways that our home church can be an ongoing support.

Nicaragua is the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere (Haiti is the first). But I guess it doesn't matter where it is...little girls shouldn't be eating garbage and made sex slaves to garbage truck drivers in any country.
I wonder if you know...there is more "Slavery" in 2008 than at any other time in history. The numbers are staggering and most of it flies just under the radar of the average person and sounds just a little too unbelievable to pay attention to.
When the Africans were being traded in Slavery in Wilberforce's day, it was a legitimate "business". A slave cost his owner the equivalent of around $50,000...a fair investment. Today, girls are tricked and kidnapped (mostly from Asian countries, but at least 30,000 from right here in the US), they are trafficked to other countries to cover the trail, and then sold for $18. And they're not being asked by their buyer to pick cotton either.
Something should be done.
"Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen. To loose the chains of injustice and to untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and provide the poor wanderer with shelter--when you see the naked to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?" Is 58:6-7

We're NOT too small to do anything (that was one comment I read on Flickr about the pictures.) I for one won't stand for it. I recently heard of a man in India who intends to END slavery so that when his children are his age, they can be working on another problem. I'll partner with him and Gloria and Shannon Keith and Dave Rogers and others like them and at least die trying!


michelles72 said...

It's interesting that I read this blog today, because just this morning (at backporch with the community group ladies) we were talking about slavery and how there's more of it now than there ever was before. When I first read this I thought, "of course, she was there with us talking about it" but you weren't. So I guess God just must be trying to make a point to me today. Guess I'd better start praying about this major issue!

Katie said...

Thanks for this! I'm so glad to see more folks getting passionate about the modern-day slave trade. It's hard, so hard, to know what one person can do, but I try to keep telling myself that the difficulty doesn't let us off the hook! I didn't get a letter, but I would LOVE to support you on your trip. I miss seeing you at leader's meetings...