Child Protection

Under the big tree

Under the big tree | World Vision Blog

A World Vision savings group meets in Tanzania. (©2014 Jon Warren/World Vision)

Our staff writer Kari Costanza was at a community group meeting under a big tree in Tanzania when the principal of a nearby school brought a 6-year-old girl to them. She had run away from home … her father was planning to sell her as a wife.

This community group stood together and said "No!" See how we can be greater than child marriage, together.

Su Su is finding her own dream

Su Su is finding her own dream | World Vision Blog

18-year-old Su Su is learning skills as a hairdresser. Now she has hope for her dream of being a hair salon owner.

As a child, Su Su* worked a variety of jobs in Cambodia to help provide for her family, a road that led her into prostitution at the age of 14.

Through a World Vision recovery center, Su Su has learned the skills she needs to follow her dream. Now, she has real plans for her future.

This is her story in her own words.**

Roots and wings

Roots and wings | World Vision Blog

Zebra is a former child soldier who benefited from World Vision’s Rebound project. Today, he has his own carpentry business and is able to lead a normal life. (©2012 Gilbertine Julie Uwimana/World Vision)

A few months ago, World Vision communicator Jeremie Olivier traveled to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and met children benefiting from World Vision’s Rebound project, which helps rehabilitate former child soldiers and prostitutes. Read about his encounter with Zawadi and how this teenager is finding her wings through mechanics.

A vision of opportunity for child laborers

Combating forced labor is part of World Vision’s holistic approach to protecting children and ensuring that every child has the opportunity to experience life in all its fullness. World Vision works to address the root causes of child labor and create opportunities for affected children to get an education and leave jobs that are often dangerous, dirty, and degrading.

Today, we present the stories of two boys whose lives as child laborers are turning toward new opportunities through World Vision programs.

Why World Vision? Life in all its fullness

Around the world, there are 115 million children trapped in hazardous child labor, and millions more are victims of abuse and other forms of exploitation. Under such conditions, children cannot experience fullness of life. World Vision works to protect children by preventing exploitation and abuse, by restoring children that have been abused, and by speaking out about child protection issues.

Today’s infographic illustrates our work in this sector.

Sumi's journey from horror to new hope

In February, advocates won a huge victory when the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA) passed Congress with broad bipartisan support. The TVPRA allowed the U.S. government to partner with the government of Bangladesh to pass its own anti-trafficking law in 2012.

Now, the fight begins to ensure that this law is funded and that the United States remains a leader in the global cause to end modern-day slavery, continuing to partner with countries like Bangladesh.

[Video] Melka's story: Child bride to advocate for girls

We first brought you the story of Melka in Ethiopia last year. Today, we're excited to present this video depiction of the remarkable young woman's journey.

Melka was 14 years old when, to her surprise, her parents married her off to an older man from another village whom she didn't even know. When Melka resisted him later that evening, he and his friends beat her severely. She woke up in the hospital.

Only a child, but already a man

More than 10,000 Cambodians cross the border into Thailand every day to earn a living. Among the throng of workers and peddlers are children like Horm, who gathers recyclable trash and sells his gleanings at Rong Kluea market.

He is only 10, but he already works like a man. Between his rounds, he drops by a World Vision learning center to play. It is at this center where he experiences just a few moments of being a child.

Q&A with an [almost] child bride

Shapla in Bangladesh was devastated when her parents arranged a marriage that would force her to drop out of school.

But thanks to World Vision, when Shapla told her friends about her situation, they knew what to do. Shapla's friends had completed a life-skills education course, and they were able to contact community leaders, who advocated for Shapla.

Read on to learn how Shapla escaped what she calls the "cave of death" -- and how her story represents World Vision's efforts to create futures of dignity and hope for girls and women.

When girls pay a terrible price for living in poverty

The United Nations has declared October 11 as International Day of the Girl. As illustrated by the tragic story of Mao* in Cambodia, extreme poverty often prevents girls from getting an education and leaves them vulnerable to the worst kinds of exploitation.

World Vision works globally to help change this reality -- and to empower girls and women to reach their full, God-given potential.

Standing side-by-side with northern Uganda

You may have noticed that there’s been a lot of talk recently about Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). That’s a good thing.

Kony and the LRA terrorized northern Uganda for 20 years. They continue to terrorize the people of the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Sudan, and Central African Republic. It’s now time for you to harness your attention and passion: Act to do the most good for the children most hurt by Kony’s campaign of terror.

The LRA continues to kill, maim, and abduct children in DRC, South Sudan, and Central African Republic. Mercifully, though, peace has come to northern Uganda. We now have the opportunity to join hand-in-hand with the people of this region to build a bright future for them and their children.

World Vision is partnering with communities across Uganda to ensure that the conditions that allowed the LRA to form in the first place are never allowed to emerge again.

You can now join in that partnership.

Is chocolate your guilty pleasure?

Abdul is 10 years old.  While many children his age are in school, Abdul spends his days harvesting a bean that is an essential ingredient to a symbol of decadence, love, and happiness in the western world. But to him, it represents pain, toil, and sadness.

Abdul is a child slave working on a cocoa farm in Cote D’Ivoire -- where 35 percent of the world’s cocoa originates -- to make the chocolate you and I love.  Abdul has never tasted chocolate. He says he does not even know how cocoa beans are used.

Millions of Melkas

More than 60 percent of Ethiopian girls will be married before they are 17. It's a startling fact.

But when we see and hear the story of a girl who was forced into marriage when she was just 14 years old, statistics are transformed from mere numbers to a face. To a voice. To reality.

Participating in protection

Editor's note: The following is a message that was shared with our staff around the world from Kevin Jenkins, president of World Vision International. As we share it here, we hope you find it as intriguing and worthwhile as we do.

What helps children to prepare for -- and cope successfully with -- disasters?

Why not ask them?

With that simple question in mind, five organizations who regularly deal with crisis situations -- including World Vision -- asked 600 children in 21 disaster-vulnerable countries around the world what they thought.

The answers were so powerful and informative that we turned them into a Children’s Charter for Disaster Risk Reduction, and presented them on May 12 to the third session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction.