Friday, 21 December 2012


We go about our lives assured everything is alright, everyone is as they seem and no one would possibly want to harm us. Why would they want to harm us? After all, we are good people.

Indeed, that is the way the world should be but it is not quite so. There people out there ready to plunder others for self- benefit. Awareness on key issues is principal in keeping yourself safe as well as those you love therefore let us examine the people and motives and results of modern day slavery called Human Trafficking.

There is a broad aspect when it comes to describing Human Trafficking. Simply put it is illegal trade in which humans are made to do inhumane work or work conditions for the benefit of illegal perpetrators. This description could fall short of many aspects of trafficking. The United Nations puts it this way;

(a) 'Trafficking in persons' shall mean the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs;
(b) The consent of a victim of trafficking in persons to the intended exploitation set forth in subparagraph (a) of this article shall be irrelevant where any of the means set forth in subparagraph (a) have been used;
(c) The recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of a child for the purpose of exploitation shall be considered 'trafficking in persons' even if this does not involve any of the means set forth in subparagraph (a) of this article;
(d) 'Child' shall mean any person under eighteen years of age"

Information from Salvation Army Website.

  • Plunderers, anyone who plunders another for cheap or free labor is a plunderer regardless of whether the labor comes from a relative or someone they claim to help, as long as the terms fit the description above.
  • Some Companies, for example,commercial agricultural i.e the cotton used to make your shirt could have been picked up by a trafficked person, some traffickers pose as modelling agencies offering opportunities abroad, entertainment massage parlors .
  • Anybody can be a human trafficker but not everybody is a human trafficker. Learn to identify them;

No, they do not have to an eye-patch over their eyes. You cannot tell by looking. From the view of many different victims of trafficking, the person who made them victims promised them a good life, wore clean clothes and had a smile on their face. So how do you identify a trafficker from everyone else?

  • VALIDATE ALL YOUR JOB OFFERS. Many traffickers appear to be having good intentions for you and look like they want to make your life better with their promises of work. Sometimes it is hard to tell by looking but always do background research on what they promise and do not take anyone by their word.
  • GET RICH FAST SCHEMES. If you cannot trace where there success is from but they look successful and offer you the same success be wary. If what they promise is true, are they able to show you the life of someone they had helped or worked with in the long run. They may well be able to but do more research and ask around anonymously even search for details on internet if you must but remember these people are skilled in their illegal trade.
  • STRANGERS WITH A KEEN INTEREST ON WHO YOU ARE AND YOUR LIFESTYLE. MAY EVEN OFFER FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE AT FIRST. They appear to have a genuine interest in your life, how much you make, where you live, your relationship with your family, your education and well being and your needs. Even though they may not know you but offer you the much needed assistance. Is the person well known in your area? If you go with them or according to their plan and something happens to you, will they be able to hold this person accountable for you? Traffickers disguise themselves in many forms so you should make sure that you are confident with this person, never take a person by what they say.
  • TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS. You cannot know who is a trafficker at first sight but do not follow anyone you feel is not trustworthy even if they promise you what you most desire for they come in many manners and shapes, female or male, young or old. Do not be a victim;

Anyone can be a victim of trafficking but traffickers usually target specific people;

  • Migrant workers
  • People with little foreign language efficiency which makes it hard for them to communicate in countries they are trafficked to.
  • Young children from poor backgrounds.
  • Immigrants.
  • People with limited education.
  • People with cultural barrier.
  • People who are unaware of their Human Rights.

You cannot blame a person for being trafficked. Lack of adequate means to identify traffickers because they are so well synced with the society has allowed for trafficking to go on behind closed doors even into the 21st century. People are trafficked for all the bad reasons some of the few are;

  • Sexual Exploitation
  • Forced cheap labor
  • Slavery
  • Removal of Organs

  • Firstly, you have to learn how to identify trafficking victims.
  • Join a Voluntary Organisation  in your area and report that is involved in trafficking and report what you know.
  • It is not advisable to take matters into your own hands as this may put you in danger, rather work with the law enforcement or with the Organisation in your area to set the captives free.
  • If their is no Organisation in your area, seek help on behalf of the victim from International Organisations such as Human Trafficking.Org and Trafficking Project.Org.
  • If you know someone has traveled for work but you have barely heard from them, contact the ICRC with the help of the National Red Cross can help you locate your loved one.

Do you know anyone who has been trafficked or do you want to fight against this modern day slavery. Or do you know something not added to this article that you would like to add. Feel free to comment or contact us;

This is am I AM SAFE Project by Safety First for Girls.

Sunday, 16 December 2012


Image Courtesy of

Mothers are a key female figure in the life of most girls. This also refers to the women who may not be a biological parent but play a key role in the life of a young girl; this could be a grandmother, aunt, teacher, stepmother, family friend, or just any responsible adult woman, maybe even a big female celebrity.

Young girls mirror who they see around them, so it should be no surprise if they behave just like the female adults they're influenced by.

But how exactly do mothers influence their daughters?

The above list just proves how a mother impacts their daughters life in the short and long term. However, is it a mothers responsibility to talk to her daughter about sex, and more, should mothers teach daughters to enjoy sex? 

The simple answer: YES.

A recent study claims mothers have a big influence over daughters views of sexuality. There are many reasons for this, some of which are:

However, some mothers are afraid to openly discuss sexual health and safety with their daughters for various reasons such as cultural taboo's or embarrassment among other reasons and so just keep quiet about it, never ever bringing up the issue.

When a sex scene comes on TV, everyone in the family feels uncomfortable and tries to be keep 'busy' until it's over. This should not be the case.

Not discussing sexuality can lead to a great dent in a mother-daughter relationship because the more the daughter keeps her sexuality a secret, consequently the mother will start to play guessing games just to know and this would only be because a platform was never raised for mutual discussion.

Not talking about sex to your daughter at the right time will mean the job will be handed over to another person, an aunt who may not share the same views as you, a peer who is also uneducated on sexuality or even worse, it is left to the media to educate your child. What will you choose?

How to talk to your daughter about sex.

  • Be open
  • Do not be judgmental
  • Be honest
  • Do it creatively e.g watching a fun ed video together
  • Follow up
  • Do not intimidate and allow a serene environment for your daughter to share her feelings
  • Make it part of a normal conversation instead of having one big nerve-wrecking talk.

Did your mother ever teach you about sex? Let us know.

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Wednesday, 12 December 2012


These are the outcome conclusion of the International Conference on Population and Development beyond 2014 that took place in Bali Indonesia on 3 - 6th December 2012.

The outcome encouraged the government to;

  • Protect young peoples rights as Human Rights.
  • To stop violence against women.
  • To stop gender based violence.
  • To stop bad traditional practices.
  • Access to family planning.
  • Encourage safe and legal abortion.

Read the clip unedited version on sexual below according to the ICPD Outcome statement with the full version that includes many other outcomes available on the Global Youth Forum;

Sexual rights

Governments must fund and develop, in equal partnership with young people and health care providers, policies, laws, and programs that recognize, promote, and protect young peoples’ sexual rights as human rights. This must be developed in accordance with the principles of human rights, non-discrimination, respect, equality and inclusivity, with a gendered, multicultural and secular approach.*

Governments, together with other stakeholders, should guarantee an environment free from all forms of harmful traditional practices and psychological, physical and sexual violence, including gender based violence; violence against women; bullying in the home, school, workplace and community; sexual coercion; and female genital mutilation, amongst others. Support must be provided for victims of violence including free counseling, services and legal redress.

Cultural and religious barriers such as parental and spousal consent, and early and forced marriages, should never prevent access to family planning, safe and legal abortion, and other reproductive health services – recognizing that young people have autonomy over their own bodies, pleasures, and desires.

* With reference to the WHO working definition of sexual rights, the Yogyakarta Principles, and Sexual Rights: an IPPF Declaration. 

Do you have any questions, comments, additions or criticisms, feel free to leave a comment or email us today;

Saturday, 8 December 2012

8 Steps to Starting A New Life

Written by Kamesha Gordon

Life is a gift! The chance to pull fresh air into our lungs daily, feel the sun shining on our faces, meet new people, and pursue our goals, are undeniable blessings. But there are many circumstances that can cause us to view our lives, as curses! It is easy to fall into despair—easy to believe that our painful experiences or existence, are all that life has to offer.
Sometimes, our suffering is a product of being victimized by others. At other times, our trials are the result of our own poor decision making. Let’s be honest—it happens.  But either way, we are not bound to the life we lived in the past or even the life we live presently.
We can obtain a new life, as long as our hearts continue to beat! We can escape physical places of bondage, as well as prisons of the mind!  We can love our life, be proud of the work we do, and look toward the future with-- not only a hopeful heart-- but with an excited spirit!

The first step is believing—believing in yourself and your God given ability to not only survive-- but to thrive! Let’s talk about how! 

Make peace with everything and everyone that you can. Forgive those who have wronged you. Ask for the forgiveness of those who you have hurt. Whether or not they accept your apology is their decision, but you must extend it. Pay back any debts you can, or get on a payment plan with that individual. Think restitution, restoration, and recompense. And do your best to settle all matters. Accept the past and anything you endured or that others endured at your hands, during that time—and then, move on
Refuse to live in that mental space. You cannot change the past. 
Mentally replaying the ugliness of the past, steals your freedom and your future. Stop punishing yourself. When it is over, it is over.  
Also, make good decisions in the future. Be cautious and wise to avoid a repeat in trauma or dysfunction. Every day that you spend doing the correct things, will grant you greater peace about your past.


What does your new life look like? What type of character do you have during that life? What level of education do you have? How do spend your days? What do you do at night? Are you an avid reader? What type of friends and associates do you have? Do you help others? Do you feel safe? Are you doing well financially? Do you have a good reputation? Do you want to live somewhere other than where you live now? 
Ask all these questions of the new life, which is consequently the new you! Write down exactly what you want out of your new life. And then write down a plan to achieve each feature of your new life. What are the obstacles? How can they be overcome?  
Ask every pertinent question. Brainstorm. And then answer it. Think outside the box!

When do you want your new life to start? And what sign will assure you that a new life has begun? What will be your starting or changing point? 
Begin to set a series of dates to meet the goals that are the steps, to the new life. “Someday” ends up being “no day”. 
So make sure you have tangible goals and due dates for each element of the plan. That is also the only way to track your progress. 
And if there is someone you trust—tell them. That way, they can hold you accountable for making the necessary changes.


Watch those around you. Begin to pay attention. What have others done to succeed in certain areas? What behavioral patterns do you see in those who fail to live a purposeful and thriving life? Learn from the victories and mistakes of others around you and abroad. 
Consider signing up for THE EXPERIENCE PROJECT and get acquainted with people facing similar situations to yours-- it is an extraordinary and encouraging community.


Most challenges are financial and resource based. Begin to save, and gather your resources. Seek additional means to earn income. And be patient during this time. It may take longer than you like. Honestly, it may take years to get the funds to complete your plan. Don’t forget why it’s worth it—because your new life is waiting on you!

Change is a challenge. You may be tempted to return to your old ways or habits when the pursuit of the new life becomes overwhelming, scary, and uncomfortable. Prepare yourself for difficulty and to be mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually stretched! It is similar to becoming physically fit. The running and weight lifting hurt, at first. They exhaust you and may discourage you from continuing. Push through it. You’ll learn to love it! Because you’ll know the discomfort means you’re getting closer and closer to your goal!

Dream-- in order to take the limits off! Dream to stir your creativity. Dream to visualize the places you can go and things you can do. Visualization is a powerful tool. Can you see yourself 5 years from now, exactly where you want to be? Or close to it? What about 10 years from now? Be daring and courageous and imaginative when you dream! Combine that with the correct actions and you cannot lose!

Read motivational quotes daily. Read books. Watch motivational speakers on YouTube. Never stop feeding yourself inspiration and encouragement. Yesterday’s meal won’t stop your body’s need for food today. Your dreams are the same way. They get faint daily, and therefore must be fed daily.  If you don’t pour knowledge and wisdom into this journey toward a new life, you’ll never have it. 

About Author

Kamesha Gordon is a Creative Non-Fiction Writer. She is a SAFIGIan writer and continuously volunteers in addition to her Freelance Creative Writing. View her profile here.

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Wednesday, 5 December 2012

What if Its a Relative?

How do we handle crime at the hands of a relative, someone we know so well, someone who we interact with and at some point even adored?

Regardless of whether the crime is commited to you or another family member or even a complete stranger. It is always highly disturbing to know that we know the criminal and he is within our borders.

The truth of the matter is, if we do not report any crime commited, whether by someone we know or someone we do not know we increase the chance of that crime being commited again on another person and therefore take sides with the criminal even though we may be victims ourselves.

That we know the criminal personal puts us in a confusing situation of whether to tell or not to tell. Before we decide either, we should consider the consequences of both.

  1. If we tell, the criminal we know will be arrested and we shall probably not be seeing them as often as we could have possible wanted. And we shall also be held accountable as the "goody goody" that spelt all the secrets making it possible for that relative to hate us or even threaten us. 
  2. If we do not tell, the crime will possibly repeat itself and on new victims. And in future should it be discovered that you knew and were helping cover up the crime, that is a whole new scenario with you also possibly facing jail time!

What a conflict withing yourself but remember that reporting a crime whether done by someone we know or not we are helping to clean up society and also helping the one who commited the crime to a better life or even to help.

Before reporting be sure that you have made up your mind and you have enough supporting evidence in order that justice prevails.