Who do you rescue?
CRI rescues children and families trapped in sex trafficking and labor slavery. Learn more on our homepage.
Where do you rescue?
CRI is currently working in Asia and Africa, and recently began operations in the U.S.
What does modern day slavery look like?
In developing countries, modern day slavery takes the form of forced labor, sex trafficking, debt bondage, child brides, and child soldiers, among others.
In forced labor, children and families are made to work long days with little to no pay. They work anywhere from brick or rope factories to restaurants or tea shops. Many of the trafficked people we rescue have been beaten with metal rods or burned with acid for not moving fast enough or simply being in the slave owner’s way. Many of the women and girls are also sexually abused by the slave owners.
In sex trafficking, many of the children we rescue are forced to service customers in tea shops or brothels. And as stated above, many people in forced labor are also sexually abused.
Whether in a brothel, restaurant, or brickfield, many trafficked people live on the premises of where they are being exploited. They do not have any rights and cannot leave the property. They are at the full discretion of the slave masters.
How do people end up in slavery?
Often, families in developing countries sell their children because they cannot afford to provide for them. This is very common in families with multiple children. Traffickers promise that in exchange for money, the children will be given jobs. For parents who have too many mouths to feed, this seems like a blessing.
Other times, children are orphaned after natural disasters. Traffickers drive around looking for children wandering alone, and then transport them to a facility far away where the children have no chance of ever finding their home.
Older children are often tricked into prostitution or labor slavery when traveling for the promise of a job. In many countries, traffickers will travel to rural villages and deceive families with stories of jobs for the children. Once the children arrive at their new location, traffickers take their passports and any identifiers, and sell them into labor slavery or sex trafficking. Traffickers even cross borders in order to confuse the victims and prevent escape.
Finally, many poor families are trafficked into labor slavery through debt bondage. With one family we rescued, the mother had fallen sick, so the father took out a small loan to cover her medical bills. The family was charged 1,000% interest and couldn’t pay it back. The family was then taken into labor slavery in a brickfield until they could pay back their loan. Most families who enter into debt bondage have no way out and can stay enslaved for generations.
In the United States, trafficking often looks like runaway and homeless children ending up in sex trafficking. Romeo pimps are men and boys who take in runaways and pretend to be a boyfriend. By promising love and affection, they win the love and trust of the victim. Romeo pimps will then begin to sell the victim for sex.
U.S. sex trafficking also involves traffickers prostituting victims on the streets, as well as in hotels, at truck stops, and through escort services.
Modern sex trafficking can even look like a new trend called “sugaring” wherein wealthy older men pay college-age girls to be their “sugar baby.” The men pay a monthly allowance and shower the girls with gifts. However, this creates an unbalanced power dynamic, and many women feel pressured to give sexual favors in exchange for the money and gifts.
Finally, modern slavery in the U.S. can look like labor slavery or sex trafficking of victims taken across the border into the U.S. Traffickers take identifying documents and force victims to work for little to no pay. Many victims are trafficked into domestic servitude, massage parlors, chicken factories, manual labor on farms and orchards, and restaurants, among others.
Do you rescue families, just kids, or both?
Who we are able to rescue depends on the location. In many brickfields, families stay together or adopt orphaned children, and we’re able to rescue the entire family. Particularly in brothels or restaurants, however, the children trafficked into forced labor are already orphans. In this case, we only rescue the children.
When you rescue people from slave labor, do you purchase people from the traffickers or just take them?
We DO NOT exchange money for people enslaved. We take children and adults out of their situations.
How do you verify that the children and families you rescue are actually slaves?
CRI has local assets who live in the country to verify the children’s information before we ever begin a rescue. We use a six-step process to verify which children are being sex trafficked or are in slave labor, which children are orphans or street children, and which children belong to local families.
Once CRI rescues children, where do they go? Can they be adopted?
Due to laws and regulations, we cannot adopt children out of the countries where we are working because it is against their policies. In fact, one country stopped allowing adoptions altogether because the traffickers were using the system.
Therefore, once the children are rescued, we place them with host families who provide a loving environment for the children to flourish. We are currently restructuring our SurvivorCare program, which you can learn more about here.
How do I get involved in other ways?
Visit our TEAMS Training page to learn more about becoming a rescue operator or SurvivorCare team member. Host a fundraiser, donate, or even sponsor a rescue operator or rescue mission. Feel free to contact us if you’re interested in helping with command post, administration, or you feel you could contribute in other ways to help Rescue, Restore, and Raise Up™ children from slavery!