Human trafficking is a multi billion dollar industry. The United Nations estimates that up to two million people a year fall victim to this fast growing area of international crime; many of these are women and children. The trafficking industry is fueled largely by poverty on one side and greed on the other. Each year people are bought, sold, coerced, and deceived into becoming its victims. They are exploited in many ways from prostitution, pornography, organized begging, to domestic labour and much more.

Scripture is clear that God places a value on our lives that is far and beyond anything we could ever dream up. In Psa 49:8 he says “the payment for a human life is too great. What we could pay would never be enough” (GNB) We all know that God loved us so much that he gave himself to ransom us and each day we get to live free – grateful for that love! Yet each day man places a value on lives around the globe and the value he places is incredibly low.

In 1998, the International Labour Organization reported its calculations that up to 14% of the gross domestic product of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Phillipines, and Thailand derives from sex tourism.1 I wonder what that figure would be today?

When we in NZ think about such things as human trafficking, if we do, we think of them as being far away, but even in our nation human trafficking has spread its ugly tentacles.

“Most people think of human trafficking as things like forcibly smuggling women across borders to work as prostitutes but it is much broader than that. It can also count amongst its victims mail order brides (NZ has lots of advertisements for those), migrant workers, foreign fishermen and those in arranged marriages.”

An example real close to home – on coming home from the USA in 2007 we discovered that the letting agency, which was finding tenants for our home while we were away, had let our home out to a local brothel owner and he had used it to settle in his new girls from Asia. Our neighbour told us that one night they found one of the girls hiding under their deck, trying to get away from something… Were those girls here as willing workers or had they somehow been tricked into believing that a better life was waiting for them here? We may never know and like so many, we thought it only happened far away, overseas, but it invaded our personal lives here in NZ and similar things are possibly happening in your neighbourhood right now. Just today I heard about another example here in NZ of foreign workers who have paid their boss thousands of dollars to work in this country. That’s right – they paid the boss, not the boss paid them!

What can we do about it? What can you do about it? We can certainly report people we hear about who are mistreating worker, but we can do more. XPNZ is doing just that with our missions focus. Our region of focus is Cambodia / Thailand and we are working to free women and children from the sex-trade there. We are working alongside the Extreme Prophetic USA base to establish safe houses in some of the villages and children’s homes in Pattaya, Thailand and Poipet, Cambodia in conjunction with some already established workers there. Rob and I will be in Cambodia in January next year as a part of our outreach there; why don’t you think about joining us – for details on how click here

We have now got up on our website all the info about XPNZ’s involvement as a ministry with the XPUSA missions initiative in Cambodia. We are looking to build a safe-house in one of the villages. It will cost us only US$15,000 (start up cost) to build the house and run it for a year, which includes transport, food, education for the family and 3 kids that will live there etc. It will be even less in the following years because start up costs aren’t there. Check out all the info on the website and do pray with us for the release for the finances for that. If you would like to give toward that safe-house or our other work in Cambodia there is a link on the website where you can do that.

Scripture says in Is 58:6 that God wants to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, breaking every yoke. He isn’t going to do it without us; he has made us each his representatives and we get to see those bands of wickedness broken as we step out and go into the nations in his name.

You might think that what we are doing is one drop in a  vast ocean, but human slavery was beaten once in many nations and it can be done again. The rise against it has started and you, along with us, can be a part of seeing this evil brought down. We can’t do this alone – we need your help, both in prayer and financially.

We have available a free DVD which shares how you can be involved in helping us stop the sex trafficking of women and children in Cambodia. This DVD is great for sharing with cell groups, churches or businessmen who may be able to pray or help financially in some way. Please contact Rob if you would like us to send you out a copy.

To find out more about how you can be involved in helping us click here.

1 – US Justice Department article – to read – click here

2 – NZ Herald Tues Sept 13 2011 – to read – click here