CAMPAIGN AGAINST  CHILD SEX EXPLOITATION AND TRAFFICKING

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Reflection of Mission Trip

Every year, Father Martino Nguyễn Bá Thông leads mission trips to Vietnam, Cambodia, and other Southeast Asia countries (such as Laos, Singapore or Malaysia...) entitled "Lend A Hand." Father Thông reminds all the participants that the purpose of the mission "is not DOING but LEARNING. When you are on the mission you don't do a lot! I want you to open your heart, mind, ears, and eyes to feel, live, listen, see and learn. The DOING begins when you return home to your own country. You can talk about OBV mission and works with passion, so you can be the VOICE and the HAND of the many children being sold and forced into sex exploitation and trafficking!"
 
Below are some of their reflections.
Saturday, 17 April 2010 11:07

End of the year luncheon

 

An end of the year luncheon.  I was excited to see the girls again, in their own home: their own element.  These four girls had been rescued from being sexually exploited, and are now living in a One Body Village home.  Here they learn to live together as a family, sharing responsibilities, and also to become educated.  After the trip to Vũng Tầu, we were invited over for lunch to celebrate the end of the year and the coming of the next.

duabe1

 

Wednesday, 24 February 2010 02:52

The window of opportunity

 

The tree branches sway as a gust of sea wind hits them. The skies are murky and gray, not the best day to head to the beach.  It’s about 7:30 AM and I am sitting at a table having breakfast with two very special people.  I glance up, and see them looking out the window, most likely wishing and praying for sunnier weather so that we can go for a swim.  I sit a moment, taking the scene in, and wonder what the future holds for these young girls.  There’s no doubt in my mind that they have seen more than their fair share of gray skies and a tumultuous past.

They have lived most of their young lives forgotten, and forced to do the unspeakable. Lost and abandoned by friends and family, these girls were physically and sexually abused… forced into sex slavery.  Rescued from the streets, they are currently living in a One Body Village home where they go to school, learn to share family responsibilities, and live with great role models and teachers.  Now, they pray and have hope for not just sunnier skies, but a brighter future.

 

It was 1 AM in Saigon when I began to gather my thoughts and experiences about the Vung Tau Trip in Viet Nam. This trip allowed me to spent time with the kids and got to know the children as we stayed 2 days and 1 night together. I learned that these four girls had been abandoned by their family members emotionally and financially. They were stranded and homeless for days even though they were only adolescents. They were raped and abused while living on the streets. One Body Village Organization took these girls off the streets and had been given them a home. In the home, these girls had schedules to follow throughout the day. They got to go to school for the general education and hand-on experience with the career that fits their talents. They also learned how to cook and clean up together as a team. These children have been fighting for the bright future even with all the obstacles ahead of them.

While on the road, the girls were singing happily and loudly in the car. It was raining when we got to Vung Tau. Regardless of the gloomy weather, we had the best time ever! We put on our bathing suits and swam in the water as if the day was sunny. We were splashing water at each other and singing songs. It was joyful to see the children laughing and enjoying themselves in the water. After swimming, we went to a nearby restaurant to eat seafood. Everyone was exhausted and slept through the whole way home, except for the driver

IMG_0072

Even though these children have the long journey ahead of them, I am glad to be part of their lives for two days. I'm proud of them for having the courage to change their lives from the past. I feel that these children are no longer lost but found. They have a family where they belong. They have the tools to accomplish their dreams. Most importantly, they have the support to be a better person for society. With continual love and motivation from One Body Village, the future for these kids can only get brighter.

Kim Nguyen

Words from Father Martino Nguyen Ba Thong and OBV:  This year (2010) “annual vacation” – Father Martino took two young ladies Kim and Maria for a “come and see” mission trip in Vietnam and Cambodia.  Kim is in her mid 20s, came to the US at the age of 6; Maria is in her early 20s – born and raised in this land of “honey and milk”.  Here you will find some of their reflections.  Father Martino will also lead another 10 days Mission trip for young people (17 years and older) this coming summer of 2010.  If you are interested please contact him This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. – Space is limited – only the first 15can go!

It was 1 AM in Saigon when I began to gather my thoughts and experiences about the Vung Tau Trip in Viet Nam. This trip allowed me to spent time with the kids and got to know the children as we stayed 2 days and 1 night together. I learned that these four girls had been abandoned by their family members emotionally and financially. They were stranded and homeless for days even though they were only adolescents. They were raped and abused while living on the streets. One Body Village Organization took these girls off the streets and had been given them a home. In the home, these girls had schedules to follow throughout the day. They got to go to school for the general education and hand-on experience with the career that fits their talents. They also learned how to cook and clean up together as a team. These children have been fighting for the bright future even with all the obstacles ahead of them.

 

While on the road, the girls were singing happily and loudly in the car. It was raining when we got to Vung Tau. Regardless of the gloomy weather, we had the best time ever! We put on our bathing suits and swam in the water as if the day was sunny. We were splashing water at each other and singing songs. It was joyful to see the children laughing and enjoying themselves in the water. After swimming, we went to a nearby restaurant to eat seafood. Everyone was exhausted and slept through the whole way home, except for the driver.

 

Even though these children have the long journey ahead of them, I am glad to be part of their lives for two days. I'm proud of them for having the courage to change their lives from the past. I feel that these children are no longer lost but found. They have a family where they belong. They have the tools to accomplish their dreams. Most importantly, they have the support to be a better person for society. With continual love and motivation from One Body Village, the future for these kids can only get brighter.

 


Kim Nguyen

 

Words from Father Martino Nguyen Ba Thong and OBV: This year (2010) “annual vacation” – Father Martino took two young ladies Kim and Maria for a “come and see” mission trip in Vietnam and Cambodia. Kim is in her mid 20s, came to the US a the age of 6; Maria is in her early 20s – born and raised in this land of “honey and milk”. Here you will find some of their reflections. Father Martino will also lead another 10 days Mission trip for young people (17 years and older) this coming summer of 2010. If you are interested please contact him This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. – Space is limited – only the first 15can go!

Yesterday was the first time I accompanied Father Thong in night "flight" to distribute gifts to street old people. And that night "flight" was successfully organized with love and left everyone's heart warmth.

We gathered at Cathedral Church waiting for Father Thong, and then we were assigned routes. Let's depart!

Tuesday, 12 January 2010 00:00

Joy!

Journal – first day in Viet Nam!

I'm very joyful for today. I landed in Viet Nam around midnight last night. Tossing and turning all night for I couldn't sleep. 3 am, I wandered around the Ben Thanh plaza and met a man selling corn on the cob from Thai Binh. We shared a conversation about his hometown and family for almost two hours. I ate three corns. He charged me nine thousands in Viet Nam dong (about 50 cents in US dollar). I felt guilty for taking so much of his time. I offered him another 50 thousands in Viet Nam dong. He refused, indicating that he wouldn't be able to sell anything at this hour anyway, and he's delighted with our conversation for it shed him some warmth. But I insisted, for his kids. He accepted with much gratitude. He said, "I came into the South selling corn for 10 years now, and just today there is someone willingly join me for a small talk and even give me money." I was not sure how grateful he was, but I felt much joy. Thank you my brother, and thanks be to God.

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