“World Day against Trafficking in Persons 30 July“ is a world observation day to raise awareness of the situation of victims of human trafficking and for the promotion and protection of their rights. There were 10 Catholic Sisters from different organizations participating in the forum “Talitha Kum-Human Trafficking Prevention Alliance" in Taipei on July 30 to launch of the preparation of Talitha Kum-Taiwan Alliance. Henceforth, Taiwan Alliance will connect with cross-border human trafficking prevention networks to prevent human trafficking in Taiwan.
Talitha Kum is a Catholic international network that is against human trafficking and was founded by the International Union of Superiors General (UISG) Rome in 2009. There are approximately 2,000 Catholic Sisters, and lay members in 77 countries. Talitha Kum facilitates collaboration and the exchange of information regarding human trafficking, as well as reinforces the existing activities as of human trafficking undertaken by the service bases in the world.
Sr Therese Thong, CEO of Good Shepherd Social Welfare Foundation, said that people suffering from war, persecution, and poverty have been forced to move to other countries through immigration and migration, but transnational criminal organizations have taken the opportunity to exploit such people during their time of need through illegal labor and sexual exploitation. The illegal activities such as the child trafficking and the illegal sale of organs have made human trafficking the biggest challenge for international humanitarian rescue workers. Furthermore, she stated that in current Internet generation, if families and communities do not raise young people’s awareness of human trafficking by education, they will easily become victims themselves because of emotional needs, such as becoming emotionally involved with someone who lives in another country and wanting to go to see them, or the desire to work in a foreign country, which opens up such young individuals to the possibility of being exploited by the previously mentioned transnational criminal organization. Talitha Kum, an international network against human trafficking, is educating those young people through the church system, and making an attempt to help end human trafficking through joint initiatives, which focuses on prevention as well as providing social rehabilitation, shelter, counselling and legal assistance to such victims.
Photo above shows representatives of the religious groups which launched the Alliance. You will see two Good Shepherd Sisters: Sr Therese Thong, front row second from left, and Sr Euphrasia Chang, back row left.
Other Catholic groups represented in the photo include the Missionary Dominican Rosary sisters, Caritas Taiwan, Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, Missionaries of Sacro Costato, Sisters of Social Service, Daughters of Jesus.