Child trafficking is when children and young people are tricked, forced or persuaded to leave their homes to be exploited and forced to work.
The number of children trafficked around the world is estimated at 5.5 million as they suffer violence, exploitation and abuse which leads to forced marriage, prostitution, domestic slavery, begging and armed recruitment.
The International Labor Organization Convention no. 182(1999) on the worst forms of child labor (WFCL) classifies trafficking among “ forms of slavery or practices similar to slavery.”
According to Save the Children, children account for 27 percent of all the human trafficking victims worldwide, and two out of every three child victims are girls.
Sometimes sold by a family member or an acquaintance, sometimes lured by false promises of education and a “better” life — the reality is that these trafficked and exploited children are held in slave-like conditions without enough food, shelter or clothing, and are often severely abused and cut off from all contact with their families.
Children are often trafficked for commercial sexual exploitation or for labor, such as domestic servitude, agricultural work, factory work and mining, or they’re forced to fight in conflicts. The most vulnerable children, particularly refugees and migrants, are often preyed upon and their hopes for an education, a better job or a better life in a new country.
The ministry of public service, gender, senior citizens social protection and special programs held an event on 29th July, 2022 at the New mathare valley community grounds, Huruma. This event aimed at creating awareness on human trafficking to the people on the day of world day against trafficking in persons. This because trafficking mostly occurs in informal sector or areas.
Rahma Wako, a community health volunteer at Kiamaiko Community Social Justice Centre spoke to Mtoto News, where she said that the aim of world day against trafficking in persons is to not only create awareness but also go out and try to save children from this horrific act of trafficking.
Collins Max Odhiambo, a human rights defender from Ruaraka, who documents cases of human rights violation also says, challenges that come while documenting are threat from families which they are saving the children from. Moreover, he adds another challenge is that the victims stop going for justice, thus they give up quickly.
In addition, he adds that people need more awareness on human trafficking as they only believe it occurs internationally while the reality is that it may also occur locally.
The government, human rights activists and concerned stakeholders should try and not only create more awareness on human trafficking, but also fight against it through making sure that there is a strict action taken on human traffickers.