Hard Questions.

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I often get asked questions that are hard for me to answer.  Not because I don’t know the answer to the question, but because the answer is so offensive that I can hardly bear to get the words out.

I would LOVE to not know the real answers to these questions, but now that I know and I have had my eyes open to the reality I can’t turn a blind eye to what is happening.

What happens when a child “ages out” of the orphanage?  Human trafficking is something nobody likes to think about. 

Least of all those of us with teenage boys and girls.  It is not just the girls who are at risk.  In some countries in Eastern Europe the largest export is human beings.  The sex trade is a billion dollar industry.  Children who have no families are at high risk for exploitation.  Not just teens, children. Children “go missing” from the orphanages.  Most commonly these children are lured, sold or forced into the sex trade.  Pimps are sometimes informed by unethical orphanage staff when a child is “aging out” and they wait to pick the child up outside the doors of the orphanage.  Children and teens are sold for as little as $1500.  Knowing this is a crushing weight to my soul.   Human life is held very cheaply.

I read the profiles of young teens every week that say how bright they are.  How they excel in Math.  How they love to dance.  How they want to be a teacher, a doctor, a psychologist.  And all I can think is there are few families for young teens.  I dread knowing that if this young girl or boy is not adopted, that the small spark of hope is likely to be crushed.  10-15% will commit suicide by the time they are 18.  60% will end up in prostitution.

There are also cases where children are sold and their organs are harvested for transplant.  Kidneys sell for upwards of $10,000 each on the black market.  Lungs, livers and hearts are all harvest-able and sold.  Rumors of the possibility that foreign couples are coming to adopt a child to harvest their organs is common in Eastern Europe.  Many of the school aged children in orphanages fear being adopted for this reason.  In one country families sign a contract that they will not sell their adopted child’s organs.  Yes, that they will not SELL their adopted child’s organs.

Asia, Africa, Europe and the US…all countries where children are bought and sold.  NOT for legitimate adoption and to be part of a family but as a commodity to be used and thrown away.

If you are like me your first reaction to reading this is disbelief.  Your second reaction (after spending some time on Google checking facts) Is to ask how can I help?

You could adopt.  Or maybe, just maybe that isn’t for you…you could support someone emotionally, or through prayer, or with a donation…who is adopting.  You can support an organization that seeks to end human trafficking.  There are many ways to help.  Now that your eyes are open I hope you will be called to action too.  I hope we can all work in our own ways to make our world a safe place to be a child.

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