Desperate Girls

The Badi Girls

Between 7,000 and 12,000 young girls, aged 9-16, are trafficked each year from Nepal; mainly to India. According to Nepal Monitor/On line journal, 2007, there are more than 200,000 Nepali girls in Indian brothels.

The Dalits(untouchables) are the lowest level in Hindu society, and the Badi community, in Western Nepal, are the lowest of the low. As a displaced hungry people group the Badi community has made sexual subservience a way of life. Young girls from this group “serve” other groups. This has become a tradition and means of livelihood. Many girls, even when they are unwilling, are forced to serve as sex slaves. Family members knowingly sell their daughters to traffickers.

Though prostitution is illegal in Nepal, the industry reportedly has links with highly ranked officials and political leaders. Large groups of girls are taken across the border with many police and government officials being in collusion with traffickers and brothel owners.

Traffickers and related criminals are often protected by political parties, and if arrested, are freed using political power. As a result, there is an underlying distrust of police that has led people not to file cases against traffickers.

Domestic action involves activities of NGO’s and other volunteer groups. These groups are playing a major role to address girl-trafficking and sex slaves issues. Some NGO’s are playing a very important role to improve the situation. From creating social awareness to rescuing and rehabilitation, they are providing services (and relief) to those that need it the most – the likely victims as well as the rescued ones. The Lighthouse foundation is one of these.

*See Chandra Kala’s story on this blog site.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Baking Class

Namaste from Nepal! What an absolute privilege to be working with these amazing girls. This year my friend Gloria Higgins has come to help in the baking class and what a difference she makes!! The classroom is organised and calm instead of the chaos of last year. We also have Modu who will take over the class when I leave. She speaks quite good English so is able to interpret as well.
Another thing that has made a huge difference this year is the booklets we are using. They have the recipes in English and Nepali plus a photo of every step. Today, some of the girls will be making a batch of cupcakes, piping and decorating all on their own. They will just use the booklets. Many many thanks to my friend Steph Edwards for making up these booklets. they are invaluable. There will be an assessment of their work but this is low key as we don't want to make them nervous. They are doing really well. It's hard to explain how it feels to look at their happy faces knowing their tragic stories. Their love for God is so evident. Tow of them prayed for me on the first day and it was hard to hold back the tears. They teach us so much.
Margaret Dell

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