The joy from this weekend's run in Uganda was palpable as it streamed live on our Facebook page. Today, however, stood in stark contrast to that elation for Freedom 4/24 President Tim Spaulding and our videographers on the ground, as they sat down for two very difficult interviews with girls at Christine's House. Here is Tim's take from Uganda on the darkness they confronted during those interviews.
I’ve been eating, sleeping, and breathing anti-trafficking work for several years now so you think I’d be used to coming face-to-face with unspeakably tragic situations. But no matter how often or how many stories I hear of how a person was trafficked, raped, exploited, or abused, nothing can dull you to hearing a girl’s story as she processes through what happened to her. Nothing can prepare you for the deafening silence and tears rolling down the cheeks of a 13-year-old girl when she is asked when her baby is due.
It’s easy to forget that behind the smiling faces, exuberant chants, and playful laughs lies pain so deep that it sucks even the simplest of joys out of life. In such situations, encouraging a girl to have hope seems to almost mock the extent of her pain.
There is nothing I can do to reverse the searing pain she lives with—neither bringing the man who raped her to justice nor wrapping her in all the best comforts life has to offer could take away her nightmares or the paralyzing fear that it will happen again. The shred of hope that I cling to is knowing that in time, broken lives can be restored. Winnie, who I wrote about two days ago, is living proof.
So what can you do from so far away? Plenty.
Pray. Ask God to bring healing to their lives, to bind up their wounds, and to restore what was broken and shattered.
Share. Be an advocate for the girls at Christine’s House by telling your friends, family, and colleagues about their stories and encourage them to get involved.
Give. Each day I’ve been at Christine’s House, I am confronted by problems that could be solved with sustainable solutions if we had only had the funds.
Go. Next year from July 20-31, we will be taking another trip to Christine’s House so you can experience first-hand what your donations are doing and to provide you with the opportunity to meet girls whose lives you’ve helped change.
Don’t finish reading this blog without a resolution to do something about it.
Do something now.
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To join us at Christine’s House in 2017, email email@example.com.