People smuggle weapons, drugs, alcohol...and people. The thought never occurs to many of us because in most of the world people aren't considered "goods." But that's not true for an estimated 2 to 4 million humans a year who are traded across foreign borders as slaves, sex workers, and brides.
That's what The Human, Earth Project (launching today) is attempting to bring awareness to.
What's the project?
Ben Randall, photographer, film maker, and believer in humans, was horrified when a fifteen year old girl, M, whom he had befriended while traveling and living in Vietnam was taken from her family and smuggled across the border to China. His mission now is to raise awareness of human trafficking and hopefully help bring her home.
If you remember, when Rob and I did our trek in Sapa, Vietnam our guide, My, told us a very similar personal story. You can read it here.
Ben is returning to Vietnam to make a documentary about the people who are affected by human trafficking on a shockingly regular basis. (My told us that girls disappearing to China is a frequent occurrence in her village even though she tries to warn her friends about her experience.) Of the millions of people who are illegally traded like bags of rice each year, a large percentage are women and an estimated 50% are children. With his documentary, Ben hopes to raise awareness and spark discussion on how to put an end to this human trade, which will soon be worth more (in billions of dollars) than the illegal arms trade.
(We don't typically share "sponsored" posts on our blog, but we thought this was a good exception to make. One, we're not taking any money for it. Two, it's a story that needs to be told.)
If you, too, believe that humans shouldn't be bought and sold like commodities, there are a few ways to help get the word out.
What can I do?
the video to learn more about what Ben is trying to achieve and the horrific reality that affects so many around the world.
the project with your friends and family via social media and help spread the message behind The Human, Earth Project.
Support Ben's cause through his crowd funding campaign. Donate a few dollars or purchase a photo. Whatever you decide to give goes a long way. After all, many families in Vietnam live on a few dollars a day.
Thanks for reading, sharing, and supporting The Human, Earth Project. Rob and I believe that this Earth was made for all of us to enjoy and live on equally. We hope you feel the same way.