Mark Storm, on staff with ServLife in Asia, recently wrote about the situation of a young child who had been kidnapped in their area. Mark wrote that Shuva, a 6-year-old boy in western Nepal who had been attending the school Mark has been working with near Tikapur had been kidnapped and sold to someone in India. The tragic case was headlined on the Nepali language news, and spread throughout the country. When Shuva was rescued, Mark and Jennifer Storm, as well as thousands of other concerned individuals, breathed a sigh of relief. But Mark says that these kidnappings are becoming gradually more commonplace in Nepal.
Trafficking in Nepal
“While we are extremely thankful that Shuva was rescued, we need to continue praying for those who fall victim to this crime,” he says, “I have come to find out that there have been many, many such kidnappings lately. Many children are taken for ransom, but others are taken for forced labor or sexual exploitation.”
And tragically, Mark adds, “Some of them aren’t even kidnapped, but sold into this situation by someone in their ‘family’!” Human trafficking is a growing issue in Nepal, and is sometimes perpetuated by impoverished families who sell children into slavery to pay off debts or simply to make ends meet.
The U.S. State Department’s recent report on human trafficking estimates that “twelve thousand Nepali women and children are trafficked every year into sexual exploitation in Indian brothels, and an unspecified number are victims of internal sex trafficking.”
Mark says that “Many parents, especially those of young girls, are in a constant state of worry for their children. It is a terrible situation that requires intervention through prayer.”
How You Can Make a Difference
ServLife operates a home for at-risk children in Kathmandu, Nepal. These children live in a community environment where they are offered education, clothing, food and love. Knowing the limited options for them, we believe that the homes we run in Nepal and India have rescued many from child labor and the sex trade that is rife in the region.
If you would like to act to help endangered Nepali children, consider supporting ServLife’s home for children in Kathmandu, Nepal, or sponsoring a child there. You can also download our prayer calendar to stay up to date on prayer requests for our work around the world.
(Posted: September 14, 2009)