STOP THE TRAFFIK Awareness Raising & Fundraising Week
Monday 23rd June – Friday 27th June 2008
This week students and staff at Durham 6th Form College will be giving up something they usually spend money on during a normal week. This includes paid lunches, buying CDs, clothes, DVDs etc. Whatever they save will be donated to STOP THE TRAFFIK.
Throughout the week they’ll also be raising awareness of slavery and human trafficking through presentations and posters.
Photos to follow …..
Craig Johnson has been the inspiration & motivation behind the week long event at Durham 6th Form College, UK. He’s been a member of the Boys’ Brigade for the last 12 years, &, over the last 2 years, has been working towards his Queen’s Badge, the most prestigious award within the organisation. Craig had to attend a 3 day completion course in March 07. The course theme was based on STOP THE TRAFFIK to mark the anniversary of William Wilberforce’s victory in Parliament.
Since then, Craig has become more & more moved by the problem of slavery, further emphasised by Panorama’s documentary of Primark on Monday night.
Written by Craig Johnson ….
In the UK, most of us are fortunate enough to be able to buy our own food, drink clean water & sleep comfortably at night. We know that when we wake up in the morning that we will be able to put on clean clothes. We will be able to brush our teeth, clean our bodies ready for the day ahead. If we work, we are paid to do so. If we study, we do so free of charge. We have rights, we have liberties, & we have freedom.
If you have been trafficked into slavery or forced labour then none of the above applies. You will be fed only what will keep you alive. You drink dirty water, &, if you sleep, you sleep in fear. You will wake up & you will wear the same clothes that you’ve been wearing for weeks. There won’t be a toothbrush or shower in sight. You are forced to work. If you’re lucky, you could be working on a farm or a plantation for just 25p a day. You could be a prostitute from 8 o’clock in the morning until 10 o’clock at night. You could be forced to kill innocent people who don’t agree with the regime of your government. Rights are a dream you have at night; freedom is a dream that vanished years ago.
You are probably one of the people who were promised a bright future. You were promised a healthy wage to send back to your family. You were promised a proper bed, clean clothes & the chance to have freedom for the first time in your life. But they paint a brighter picture than the horrible truth. The traffickers get you on their side then take you away to a hell hole until, if you are incredibly lucky, you escape; or, like thous&s of people, you die, when they throw you away & replace you with another innocent victim.
If you’re one of these unfortunate people, it is an 80% chance that you are female. It is a 50% chance that you are a child under the age of 16. On official figures, there are 2.4 million people trafficked every year but we know that these figures aren’t true. They only account for cross border trafficking, & only account for the ones that they are aware of. It is estimated that over 20 MILLION PEOPLE are victims of slavery, generating over 7 BILLION DOLLARS every year.
Think about this next time you have some food or drink clean water. Think about this next time you’re in Topman or River Isl& trying on the latest fashion. Think about it, & make a difference. People shouldn’t be bought & sold.
‘Nobody is free until everyone is free’ (Vivek P&it)