CAMPAIGN AGAINST  CHILD SEX EXPLOITATION AND TRAFFICKING

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Undercovered Stories

Savannah, Georgia

March 1, 2008

Dear Readers,

Since 2000, I have been collecting stories and experiences from our work in rescuing, rehabilitating, and supporting young women and children from the cycle of sexual abuse and sex trafficking. These stories have been troubling, trying, and downright agonizing, but these are stories that need to be told. These are stories that need to be heard.

“I’m Not Stepping Foot into a Church”

After more than three years of working with One Body Village in Cambodia I’d like to believe that I’ve built a foundation of trust, not only among the girls who we’re trying to help, but also among the pimps, and among the guards who were paid to follow us and “keep an eye” on the girls and make sure that I didn’t try to help them escape.

“Purchasing My Virginity”

Nga was not one of the “lucky” few who were actually intoxicated or drugged. After being bought, the predator took her into the bedroom and raped her. She resisted vehemently. She cried, screamed, and even tried to scratch and claw, but her resistance was met with threats and abuse. The predator then tied her hands and feet to the four corners of the bed and stuffed her mouth with a towel.

More than half of a lifetime!

I don't remember my hometown. I just know that I was born in Vietnam, where there are lots of rice fields. In 1996, when I was nine years old, a lady brought me to Cambodia to be a waitress at a coffee shop. It turns out that I wasn't brought here to be a waitress. I was brought here to fulfill the sexual desires of customers. I was passed back and forth between pimps and brothels. Since that time, my life has been a living hell. I had no contact with my family or the outside world.

Tuesday, 06 October 2009 17:20

It's Your Turn to "Be Their Voice"

Conclusion – Be their Voice!

It is with much regret to relay to you the fact that these stories are just the tip of the iceberg. I have many more stories to share. For the time being, these three stories are enough to convey the painful experiences of these poor girls.

Untitled document

Written by Father Martino Nguyen Ba Thong

After the first five articles were released, I received "complaints" that the stories of this journey have not been as interesting as those of my previous trips! Goodness knows I am not a mystery writer writing a best-selling thriller! The purpose of my trip was not to find subject matter for a new story full of suspense and excitement; my articles are a collection of little anecdotes of occurrences  throughout my journey.

Wednesday, 06 April 2011 00:00

Mommy, why did you have a heart to sell me?

(OBV): This article was written according to a record of conversation of OBV child with her relatives and written by a psychologist (OBV staff) when she interacted with this child. When witnessing it, we did not understand why either. The title of this article is also a question without the answer for an anguishing reality, and cannot be described by words.

Monday, 21 July 2014 00:00

Nothing left in life – Part 1

Dad! Where are you.... Mom! Where are you...

At nightfall, the street is transformed into an exciting and bustling scene. Many three-wheeled bikes, locally called tuktuk, lined the streets leading to TaMun Park. Along the roadside lie many bars and cafés, filled with the greetings of waitresses as they entertain their guests. Under the golden glow of the streetlamps, hordes of people from all over the world have gathered to enjoy the revelry. The street, an entire kilometer long, had every form of vice imaginable to experience; from drugs, to alcohol, to gambling, it offered any and all kinds of entertainment. However, the main attraction for many men who have came here was to engage the pleasures of the body, especially with underage children (including adolescents who were merely eight or nine years old), found virtually nowhere else in the world except... Cambodia.

- Hey! You... You... want go... Go...

Wednesday, 27 August 2014 00:00

Nothing left in life - Part 2

Suddenly...

Thu took the cigarette from the stranger and lit it. As she exhaled the smoke, she thought of what to say. Although the stranger did not seem interested, she was not discouraged. After all, she was accustomed to this at a young age.

Thu has met so many different people, but they were all similar. Those who uses their money to buy pleasure does not need to be polite to prostitues like Thu. Had they pitied children like her, they would not have come to places like these. Instead, they all came to purchase an evening of pleasure, to enjoy the bodies of unfortunate children no older than their own. There was no humanity, no dignity to speak of. In her eyes, all men were animals without a drop of decency. She didn't expect any courtesy, just money for food. That's all.

Monday, 01 September 2014 00:00

Nothing left in life – Part 3

- I mean if you don't mind, sir, I would like to hear your story

Tuan wiped away his tears and related:

- My story... well it's really not worth mentioning. I've been volunteering at a Vietnamese refugee camp near here. Oh! Come to think of it, you've never told me your name. My name is Tuan, and yours?

- Thu, my name is Thu.