Job search turned nightmare...
This is Fatima's story. Like so many others, she came from a simple background, just wanted to have the opportunity to study, work in a good job, and support her family. But somehow in a very short space of time, she found herself in one of the most horrific set of circumstances one can imagine...
She didn't do anything to deserve it, it wasn't a choice; it was a bad chain of events that led her down a dark path which she couldn't find her way out of on her own. She needed someone to bring her some light.
It was late - the street and house was quiet as we approached with police. We had prepared for this. Our team had carefully gathered research, evidence and had put together the raid plan meticulously. The last thing we wanted was for things to go wrong and cause more harm.
Although it was midnight, it was relatively early in terms of the main hours of business. We noticed that there were still men arriving cautiously, unsure yet not clued in to what was about to happen.
As we entered the premises, we found 2 girls in their late teens still there with 'customers'.
When we went up to speak to the girls and told them why we were there - to rescue them, they began crying tears of relief and desperation.
After the commotion had died down and the police dealt with certain things, we had the opportunity to sit down with the girls. After we discussed a few things, we asked the girls if they could tell us about themselves.
Fatima began to share her story with us.
"I was forced to see ten men today,” she exclaimed, clearly exasperated, exhausted and almost defeated.
As she continued, her demeanour changed into something a bit more defiant, as if she had never been given the chance to tell her story. “I was cheated by a recruiter. I was promised a job but when I arrived in Bangalore he abused me and put me to work in a brothel."
When we asked Fatima if she would like to go home, she responded with sobbing.
"Yes, please take me home with you, I want to study! I have an aged and bedridden mother at home and she needs money for surgery. That's why I took up this job."
We were so thankful to have had the opportunity to find and rescue Fatima and the other girl. We knew they had been through so much heartache and pain. This was the start of the next chapter – hopefully one of healing, hope and freedom. One where they could finally be free to dream, feel safe, pursue their own destinies, be with their family and friends, and choose how they spent their time and what work they wanted to do.
It’s so simple but isn’t that what freedom is, after all?
There are women like Fatima all over India, and in many parts of the world. Her story represents millions of lives that have been or still are living through the nightmare of slavery through deception, false promises and situations of helplessness. They are living in slavery and are still holding on to the hope that one day they might be freed. You can help to change their story by supporting us.
Your gift of $100 every month can help rescue and provide restoration for a woman just like Fatima. Sign up here. You can also subscribe to updates or share her story with your friends with the links below.