Child trafficking is now on a huge scale but there is a brave army of nuns who silently fights this war head-on according to reports.
The International Labor Organization ILO reports that some 25 million people are forced into slavery worldwide, with almost 5 million being forced into sexual abuse. In Asia and the Pacific the majority of victims of sexual abuse are found - about 3.5 million, up from 200,000 in the Americas, the latest report indicates.
Traffickers move thousands of lives by trains, buses, aircraft, and ships each year and hide them from the sight of the authorities as they fly to places around the world. It is estimated that around the world 40 million people are transported, forced into prostitution and jobs.
Hope can still be found. Thousands of courageous Catholic sisters are taking on sex trafficking head-on, putting their own lives on the line in the process. Cynthia McFadden of NBC tells the story of powerful women who have been working largely in the shadows until now as part of our Keeping the Faith series.
In several countries, the sisters still run safe homes and provide shelter for women and girls who have escaped their captors. Their work is not just on the streets. The organization promotes institutional reform and promotes stronger legislation to tackle trafficking in human beings.
The group consists of about 60,000 nuns.
Child trafficking battles of nuns
Sister Lourenca Marques visited the coastal State of Goa, a popular Western India tourist destination where young girls were sought to rescue, an effort full of danger.
The area was home to a thriving sex industry a few years ago. The shelter of concrete huts overlooking the beach was used as brothels, and impugned operation was conducted by men and women.
They were embattled by a man in a mud-colored home. The man wrapped his hands around the neck of Marques and flung her to the ground because they were the enemies of what was going on there.
Marques said, however, that the attack did not discourage her or the other nuns. She shared that they can't be scared because they are coming to work for these people for a particular reason.
The man she claimed assaulted her stood at a sink and washed his face, then walked up to one of the small shacks. They warmly embraced one another. Marques asked him how he was doing and whether on Sunday she was going to see him in church. The guy grinned and nodded.
In the mid-2000s the administration bulldozed the town. But in and around Goa, women, and girls remain stuck in sex labor.
Sister Lisa Pires is based in Calangute, Goa, which was identified by Sister Lisa Pires as one of Asia's highest-trafficked areas.
She may be a cloth woman, but Pires works like a tough private researcher. Her days are dedicated to walking through the streets of difficult districts and interviewing local owners of shops and other locations where trafficking is possible. She uses data to create accurate maps with the police.
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Another story is that of sister Rose Paite.
Paite is not a solitary crucian, it is part of a large yet unknown network of Catholic nuns committed to the fight against trafficking in human beings around the world. In Rome in 2009, the organization, Talitha Kum, is now operating in 92 different countries.
The sisters operate with little external funding but organized for NBC News to visit many of the sisters' groups such as the Arise Foundation, London, and London.
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